No other flower in history is more comprehensive in meanings and messages than roses. They have always stood in for representations of love through literature and film.
Whether it's King Arthur and his Knights gifting their fair ladies or Beauty and the Beast's forever enchanted rose, roses have always been a key part of history and stories for all they mean and represent. Roses are also one of the most versatile gifts. Roses are a symbol of love, affection, and devotion and are often considered the quintessential flower of love.
The History of Roses From Cultures Around The World
Many cultures worldwide have used roses as gifts or ornaments for various occasions. Originally, roses were likely cultivated in Asia about 5000 years ago. Roses have since become intertwined with humanity. Chinese philosopher Confucius wrote about growing roses in the Imperial Gardens of China around 500 BC. Even the Romans were obsessed with roses!
In Roman mythology, the red rose was the sacred flower of Venus, the Goddess of love. They represent the symbol of her love for Adonis. Today, roses are still known as the best physical expression of romance, communicating deep and passionate love for someone special. They represent the intention to seal an everlasting union.
It's even been rumoured that the Queen of the Ptolemaic Kingdom of Egypt, Cleopatra, was bewitched by roses. One story goes that she covered her chambers with rose petals to seduce the handsome conqueror, Mark Anthony, after a battle with Caesar.
Roses aren't only a show of courtship. They also symbolise marriage and are often interpreted as a sign of love and fidelity. Because of their connection to marriage, roses are the perfect anniversary gift.
Secrets of the Eternal Roses
Roses also convey deeper secrets. The Latin phrase sub rosa, or under the rose, comes from Ancient Romans hanging roses above meeting tables. Romans believed that everyone under the roses was sworn to secrecy. So, roses have become a symbolic carrier of secrets or tacit understanding.
Early Christians took this obsession with roses to be a pagan worship of the flower. In the early days of Christianity, Roses were crushed and hardly planted out of religious zeal. However, the rose proved too irresistible, and soon all of Europe would be seizing the rose as a personal sign for love, courtship, and marriage once again!
Rose Symbology, Knights and Tudors
In the Medieval age, right up to the modern day, roses became synonymous with Knighthood and honour. The chivalric French knight, riding on a white steed to gift a flower to his paramour, an inevitable outcome of europe's obsession with roses!
Even Royals throughout history loved roses. The most famous of all these are the white and red roses of York and Lancaster in the English Wars of the Roses. These roses were eventually unified in the Tudor coat of arms to signify the end of the Civil War.
Esoteric History of Roses
There are all sorts of plants and herbs that have mystical meanings. To druids and old magic practitioners, the rose had an important symbol in herbology.
As the Queen of all flowers, the rose symbolises power, especially female empowerment. It is often used by soothsayers or medicine women the world over to aid in pregnancies or to give glimpses into the futures of powerful women.
It comes as no surprise that these flowers came to play a significant role in tarot card readings. In fact, from a mystical perspective, roses are a symbol of harmony and balance.
Telling Someone You Love them: Roses for Valentine's Day
It's clear that throughout history, roses have always been used to communicate feelings, especially when using words to say what you mean just doesn't cut it. So how will you communicate your feelings with roses?
Your gift can deliver a message using a specific colour or number of roses. Wishing to tell someone you like them? A small jewellery box with roses could be just the thing. How long these roses last can make them even more memorable for an occasion like Valentine's Day. Gifting your loved one a rose box symbolises your love for them and your eternal love with roses that will last years, not days.