In early figurative use, this yellow springtime flower is taken as the type of the first and best.
The name is recorded from late Middle English, and means literally ‘first rose’.
Primrose Day the anniversary of the death of Benjamin Disraeli (19 April 1881), whose favourite flower was reputedly the primrose.
Primrose League a political association, formed in memory of Benjamin Disraeli in 1883, to promote and sustain the principles of Conservatism as represented by him.
primrose path the pursuit of pleasure, especially when it is seen to bring disastrous consequences. The original allusion is to the reference in Shakespeare's Hamlet to ‘the primrose path of dalliance’.