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The secret language of flowers

The secret language of flowers: some examples

Still today, flowers represent a welcome gift on many and important occasions: however, in their choice, the meaning they hide is not always taken into account; it can therefore be useful to learn about these mysterious meanings, so as to make our floral tributes even more precious. The rose is always the most loved flower, but its message changes according to the color: the red ones express the loving passion, the white ones the purity (value, the latter, also present in the daisies), the yellow feelings of friendship and fidelity . Ivies also represent fidelity, just as sunflowers indicate esteem and respect. Some flowers can carry negative meanings, such as chrysanthemums, which express pain, or cyclamen, which instead symbolize farewells and resignation; the geranium, on the other hand, represents stupidity and the narcissus represents selfishness. If, on the other hand, you want to make someone understand that it occupies a special place in our thoughts, the ideal flower is the viola, often also called “pansy”.

Flowers in poetry


Flowers have been a source of inspiration for poets of all time. Among the Anglo-Saxon poets, William Wordsworth, who lived between the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, author of a wonderful poem about daffodils, or the delicate nineteenth-century poet Emily Dickinson, who wrote a poem entitled “For you I take care of these flowers”, while William Blake exalts the sunflower, which follows the course of the day and the passage of time. In the context of Italian poetry one cannot fail to mention Giovanni Pascoli, who puts nature in the first place in all its manifestations and flowers, bearers of often ambiguous and disturbing meanings, such as nocturnal jasmine and purple foxglove. The great poet of the twentieth century Eugenio Montale also gives extreme importance to botanical and floral elements:

Flowers in art


Flowers have often exerted a strong suggestion on the sensitive soul of artists: their delicate appearance and chromatic variety make them particularly suitable for appearing in sacred or profane canvases. Still lifes, which are very popular especially since the seventeenth century, are often characterized by rich and articulated floral compositions, in which a warning message is often hidden: one must not be too tied to earthly life because it is fragile and perishable, just like flowers are. In the nineteenth century impressionist painting, the representation of flowers becomes the pretext for describing the effects of light on natural elements (extraordinary, from this point of view, the series of “Water Lilies” by Claude Monet). Some artists, with a difficult and tormented life,

The secret language of flowers: Bibliography on flowers


Since the nineteenth century, the secret language of flowers has been dealt with in specific publications. One of the oldest, “Abécédaire de flore, ou language des fleurs” dates back to 1811 and was published in Paris. In the same city, seven years later, “Le Language des Fleurs” by Charlotte de Latour was published, a work illustrated by valuable engravings and of great success, as evidenced by the numerous editions that have been produced: of this book there is also a Italian translation, published in 2008, by the Olschki publishing house. Recently released is “The secret language of flowers” by Vanessa Diffenbaugh, published by Garzanti in 2011: it is the story of Vittoria, a young woman frightened by life, who finds refuge in her secret garden,

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