In the Past, most of all during Romanticism, the language of flowers were used to communicate messages and express each kind of feeling, especially love.
In our present flowers have a massive importance too, in some occasions, like the wedding, are even fundamental. It’s not a case that the firsts images that we associate to the idea of wedding represent a wonderful flower arrangement or a delicate bouquet.
But, if today the function of flowers is essentially decorative, in the past they were actually used in order to express many meanings, both religious and symbolic, depending on the country and its culture, and often on the historical period. In Ancient Egypt – that is, according to some sources, also the bouquet’s historical homeland – people used aromatic herbs, often with garlic, to protect bride and groom from mean spirits.
A similar custom was common also in Greece, place where the myrtle, considered sacred to Aphrodite, was a symbol of love, beauty and energy.
In England too, during the Elizabethan Age, the aromatic herbs were the plants which accompanied the bride, especially rosemary that, picked up in small bunches, symbolized memory and loyalty.
As the years passed, the early bouquets began replacing the aromatic herbs, even though their purpose was neither to express emotions nor to embellish the bride. In fact, during Middle Age, because of the lack of hygiene, the flowers were the only “natural” method to contrast the bad smell of bride, groom and guests.
However in Italy, during the invasion of Sicily by Moors, that took place between VII and IX’s century, the traditional habit, from Arabian culture, to adorn the bride with orange blossom were introduced. The orange blossom are nowadays considered the flowers dedicated to the marriage par excellence, in order to wish prosperity and happiness to the couple, and as a symbol of bride’s virginity and purity.
Another uncontested bouquet and flower arrangements’ queen is the rose, inspirational muse of artists and poets, who defined it the “queen of flowers”, “daughter of the sky” and “glory of spring”. But, as many Flowers Dictionaries say, not all the roses are good for the wedding! At least according to the language of flowers…it’s clear that in modern weddings there are other causes that influence the choice: personal taste, season, budget and style of the wedding.
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Desirée – wedding planner