The Language Of Flowers
Raphael Kerry

Flowers had particularly powerful meanings during the Victorian era and were often used as a method of communication – especially to someone of a romantic interest.

However, the meanings and traditions of flowers have changed throughout the years to adapt to certain cultures.

During the 1800’s in the world of the Victorians, flowers often represented the language of love and it was often a favored pastime to learn the meanings of such flowers. It was found that emotions and feelings which could not be said publically could be communicated through the use of flowers.

In each Victorian home, there would be at least one book relating to the language of flowers. The authors of these books used both visual and verbal analogies along with religious sources.

Sending or receiving flowers during this era often worked as a way of showing emotion towards that particular suitor. For example, a rose would be given to demonstrate a ‘devotion’ to that individual or an apple blossom to show ‘preference’.

However, if the suitor did not feel the same – a yellow carnation was given to express ‘disdain’.

The language of flowers has also often been used in famous literature by Austen, Bronte and Shakespeare.

Some of the most common flowers and their meaning:

Ambrosia – love returned

Anthurium – the heart

Azalea – love, romance

Bugle – most lovable

Cabbage rose – ambassador of love

Coreopsis – love at first sight

Forget me not – true love

Myrtle – love

Philodendron – loving tree

Pink carnation – women’s love

Purple lilac – first love

Red catchfly – youthful love

Red tulip – declaration of love

Rose – sacred to all love

There are also a number of flowers that symbolize fidelity including:





·Indian jasmine

·Plum blossom


However, if you are looking for a flower that symbolizes the feeling of burning passion, you can use:

·Red iris

·Yellow iris

·Peach blossom




Flowers have a language of their own – every single sentiment can be said by one flower or another. Many flowers translate thoughtfulness and love along with other emotions. It is recommended that you do some research on the language or meaning of the flower you are choosing for your loved one.