I Will Not Be Another Flower Picked For My Beauty The Language and Meaning of Flowers

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The Language and Meaning of Flowers

Only sweet flowers can say what passion is afraid to reveal

poem by thomas hood, The language of flowers

Flowers and flower bouquets have their own meaning. Most of us know that a dozen red roses mean: “Be mine.” But did you know, for example, that the primrose means “I can’t live without you”, or that the purple hyacinth means “Please forgive me”, or that the pink carnation means: “I will never forget you”, or that the gladiolus means , “Give me a break?”

Flower meanings have been used for centuries to convey ideas, feelings and messages. Word, floriography, was coined to attribute meaning to flowers. There is meaning in flower colors, number of flowers and groups of flowers. It is a silent language that we have mostly lost through lack of use.

Besides the obvious choices of color and variety, the language of flowers also includes how flowers are worn or presented. Placing flowers upright has a positive meaning, but if placed upside down, the meaning is the opposite. If the ribbon is included with the flowers and tied to the left, then the meaning of the flowers refers to the giver, but if the ribbon is tied to the right, the meaning refers to the recipient. Also, flowers can be used as answers to questions. When presented with the right hand the answer is “yes”, but when presented with the left hand the answer is “no”.

History

It seems that the Turks developed the meaning of the flower in the 17th century. In 1718, the wife of the British ambassador to Constantinople, Lady Mary Wortley, wrote a letter explaining the “Secret Language of Flowers” that she had discovered during her visits to Turkey. Europe quickly embraced the concept.

In 1819, Louise Cortambert, under the pseudonym Madame Charlotte de la Tour, wrote and published what appears to have been the first dictionary of flower language under the title, Le Language des Fleurs. It was a small book, but it became a popular reference on the subject.

During the Victorian era, the reign of Queen Victoria from 1837 to 1901, the meaning and language of flowers became increasingly popular. Victorian women in particular adopted a quiet language that allowed them to express feelings and meanings that the strict decorum of the time did not allow. Tussie-mussies, a bouquet of flowers wrapped in a lace napkin and tied with a satin ribbon became a popular and prized gift of the time.

In 1884, a whole book on the subject entitled, The language of flowers, written by Jean Marsh and illustrated by Kate Greenaway, was published in London. It became popular and respected and has been the standard source for Victorian flower meanings ever since.

Selected meanings of flowers

Here are a few selected flowers and their meanings, a short dictionary.

Almond blossoms — Hope

Anemona — Abandoned

Aster — Symbol of love

Balm — Sympathy

Basil — Best wishes

Bay leaf — “I change, but in death”

Bellflower, white — Gratitude

Bergamot — Irresistible

Bell — Constancy

Borage — Courage

Broom — Humility

Campanula — Gratitude

Carnation, pink — I’ll never forget you

Carnation, red — My poor heart aches for you

Carnation, striped — Rejection

Chinese rose — Beauty always new

Chrysanthemum — Love

Four leaf clover — “Be mine”

Coreopsis — Love at first sight

Cuckoo pint — Ardor

Narcissus — Sincerely

Daisy — Innocence, newborn, “I share your feelings”

Fennel — Flattery

Fern — Honesty

Forget-Me-Not — True love

Furze or Gorse — Lasting love

French marigold — Jealousy

Gardenia — ecstasy

Gentian — loveliness

Geranium — “You are childish”

Hare bell — Sadness

Heartsease — “I’m Always Thinking About You”

Honeysuckle — Bonds of love

Heather — admiration

Hyacinth — I’m sorry, please forgive me

Ice Plant — “Your look freezes me”

Ivy — Fidelity, friendship, marriage

Jasmine — Grace

Jonquil — “Hope for the Return of Love”

Lavender — Happiness, loyalty

Maticnjak — Sympathy

Lilac — First love

Lily — Purity, modesty

Đurđica — Purity, return of happiness

Lily, Calla — Beauty

Marigold – health, sadness or despair

Marjoram — Kindness, kindness

Myrtle — Faithfulness

Oregano – joy

Orchid — Love, beauty, refinement

Pansy — Loving thoughts

Periwinkle — A happy memory

Phlox — Deal

Poppy, red — Comfort

Primrose — I can’t live without you

Rose, cabbage — Ambassador of love

Rose, red — Love

Rose, pink — Grace, beauty

Rose, yellow — Friendship

Rosemary — Memory, constancy

Rue — Contrition

Sage — Gratitude, domestic virtue

Snow White — Hope

Star of Bethlehem — Purity

Sweet Pea — A departure, a tender memory

Sweet William — Haberdashery

Tuberose — voluptuousness

Tulip, red — My perfect lover, Reclamation of love

Purple — Loyalty, modesty, humility

Purple, blue — Loyalty

Wormwood — Sadness

Wheat — Wealth of continuation of life

Willow, crying — Grieving

Wallflower — Faithfulness

Yew — Sadness

Rose

The rose is the flower whose meaning we understand best, but here are some details about the meaning of the rose that may be of additional interest.

Rose, Black – You are my obsession

Rose, champagne – you are tender and full of love

Ruza, Leonida – Sweet love

Rose, Nicole – You are graceful and elegant, aristocratic

Rose, orange – You are my secret love

Pink, pink – Great complexion; the brightness of your smile; perfect happiness

Rose, red – Passionate love; I love you

Rose, single stems – simplicity

Rose, white – I am worthy of you; spiritual love; Innocence and purity; Secrecy and silence

Rose, white and red – we are inseparable

Rose, white and red mixed – unity; Floral emblem of England

Rose, white, dried – Death is better than the loss of virtue

Rose, yellow – friendship; Jealousy; I’m not worthy

Rose, wedding – happy love

Rose, dark crimson – grief

Rose, hibiscus – delicate beauty

Rose, Tea – I will always remember

Rose, Thornless – Love at first sight

Roses, a bouquet of ripe flowers – gratitude

Multiple roses

Red rose with one flower – Love at first sight or I still love you

One rose, any color – Gratitude or simplicity

2 roses – mutual feelings

3 roses – I love you

7 roses – I’m in love with you

9 roses – We will be together forever

10 roses – You are perfect

11 roses – You are my precious

12 roses – Be mine

13 roses – friends forever

15 roses – I am truly sorry

20 roses – I’m really honest with you

21 roses – I am dedicated to you

24 roses – Forever yours

25 roses – congratulations

50 roses – Unconditional love

99 roses – I will love you all the days of my life

108 roses – Will you marry me?

999 roses – I love you to the end of the world

What to do

With the lists above, you should be able to put together a meaningful gift of flowers or a bouquet that conveys a complex thought. Wrap the flowers appropriately and present them in a meaningful way. Then, to make sure your efforts aren’t misinterpreted, include a card that fully explains the meaning of your flowers.

After a few flower presentations you should be able to discard the explanatory notes and begin to enjoy and share the silent language of flowers.

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