JF Ptak Science Books Quick Post
I've put together a quick-and-dirty list of some interpretations of what the appearance of flowers may "mean"--say in the hands of the subject of a painting, or as a gift, or a reference in a poem or piece of literature. This in some ways reminds me of an earlier post on this blog, "An Unkindness of Ravens and a Murder of Crows", here.
Here's a short list for further reading on the language of flowers:
- Connolly, Shane. The Secret Language of Flowers, New York: Rizzoli International, 2004.
- Edgarton, Miss S. C. The Flower Vase: Containing The Language of Flowers and Their Poetic Sentiments, Boston: Samual M. Dickinson, 1843
- Greenaway, Kate. Language of Flowers, London: George Routledge and Sons, 1864.
- Hale, Sarah. Flora's Interpreter, and Fortuna Flora, Boston: Benjamin B. Mussey and Company, 1850.
- Latour, Charlotte de. Le langage des fleurs, 1830.
- Lehner, Ernst. Folklore and symbolism of flowers, plants and trees, New York: Tudor Publishing Co. 1960.
- Miller, Thomas. The Romance of Nature; or the Poetical Language of Flowers, New York: J.C. Riker, 1860
- Powell, Claire. The Meaning of Flowers, Boulder, Colorado: Shambhala Publications, 1979.
- Shoberl, Frderic. The Language of Flowers: With Illustrative Poetry; to which is Now First Added, the Calendar of Flowers 1830
- Phillips, Henry. Floral Emblems, 1825.
- Waterman, Catherine H. Flora's lexicon: an interpretation of the language and sentiment of flowers : with an outline of botany, and a poetical introduction. 1855
- Wirt, E.W. Flora's Dictionary, Baltimore, 1855.
and an overall history
- Beverly Smeaton, The Language of Flowers--a very interesting book where Smeaton compares the various meanings for flowers among the five early and integral 19th century flower-symbolism folks, beginning on pp 167. A link to a free read is here.
Some samples of the very rich descriptions of the meaning of flowers:
Almond, flowering - Concealed love.
Althea, Frutex - I am deeply in love.
Amaranth - Immortality, or piety.
Anemone - Fading hope.
Arbor-Vitae - Unchanging friendship.
Auricula, Scarlet - Pride. You are proud.