Communication through Flowers in the Victorian Era:
When was Communication through Flowers First Introduced?
During the Victorian Era, traditions, mannerisms, and etiquette were in place and was strictly adhered to. These rules are very different from those of the 20th and 21st centuries.
The Victorian Language of Flowers
Men and women, especially of the upper classes, were expected to behave in certain ways and anything outside of that was not tolerated. This included flirting and expressing feelings freely Due to these set rules and regulations, the language of flowers came up.
Making up meanings for flowers and communication through them came around for the first time in France in 1810 and lasted for four decades. This mode of communication came around in Britain in 1820 and was around till 1880.
It was during the Victorian Era that a large number of meanings were assigned to flowers and plants as a whole. Books containing meanings for different flowers were published. One of the earliest was in 1819 in France.
It was titled Le Language De Fleurs and. These served as a guideline for those who wished to communicate through flora. However, communication through flowers can to an around the World War I throughout Europe and the other parts of the world.
Expression Through Flowers
When it came to expression through flowers, it differed with regions too. For example, a yellow rose was seen as a symbol of friendship in Victorian England. However, during the same time period, the same flower was seen as a symbol of death and unrequited love in Texas.
During the Victorian era, nosegays and Tussie-Mussies were very popular choices when it came to presenting bouquets to ladies of interest. More importantly, the choice of color and flower represents the intention behind the presentation. Tussie-Mussies are also called nose bouquets.
They are composed of fragrant herbs with a single flower in the center. The entire arrangement is circular in design. Small and tightly composed bouquet of Tussie-mussie were presented to acknowledge special occasions. The way the recipient held the bouquet also indicated if she approved, acknowledged or accepted the gesture.
Pennyroyal, rue and tansy teas often depicted disdain because women used them only to induce abortions. Pineapples were used to express that that recipient was perfect.
The Symbolism of Flowers in Literature
Jane Austen and Emily Dickinson were proficient with the names and significance of flora as they were gardeners too. In Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre, when Jane looks at the snowdrops, crocuses, purple auriculas and golden-eyed pansies,
It indicates that she is feeling hopeful, cheerful, modest and thinking of the connection between money and happiness.
The Symbolism of Flowers in Art
Flowers were used mainly by Pre-Raphaelites to depict mystical and mythical symbolism in their painting. For example, Lady Lilith by Dante Rossetti might depict eroticism and sensuality. however,
The Language of Flowers Roses
The white roses behind her depict disinterest in carnality. The poppies and foxgloves symbolize that she is insecure, sleepy. See Meaning of flowers
Use of Flowers at Home
Women at home started to use flower patterns in their embroidery and sewing to denote meanings. Designing a particularly difficult pattern of a lilac symbolizes humility. Working through a marigold or a pansy depicts that the woman is struggling t come in term with some grief.