Buttercup : ‘Radiance’ – Your splendour shines like the sun
‘Floragraphy’ is the practical application of flower symbolism. Belonging to a more romantic age than ours, it uses flowers to convey meaning. Today modern technology offers texting, snapchat, all sorts of methods of communication. Floragraphy’s heyday in Europe was in the middle ages, though for centuries it has featured in mythologies, folklore, and the plays of the ancient Greeks, Romans, Egyptians and Chinese. Shakespeare’s sonnets are peppered with flower and plant symbolism.
With sweet musk-roses and with eglantine:
There sleeps Titania sometime of the night,
Lull’d in these flowers with dances and delight.’
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
Among the first to bestow meanings to various plants were poets, priests and mystics, but when you look at dictionaries of flower meanings (of which there are many) it becomes clear that it was lovers that made it their own. Posies were left as detailed messages between lovers expressing all sorts of general and specific information about feelings, moods and even practical arrangements.
There is no single categorical dictionary of flower meanings. Religious, literary, folkloric, and botanical references were all used to inform meanings. Nearly every flower has multiple meanings, listed in hundreds of books, in dozens of languages, on countless websites. The meanings I list here are from ‘The Magic of Herbs’ by David Conway.
To celebrate the romantic power of the flower I am offering five framed wild flower posy paintings at a special price of £225 each (including UK p&p). They are life-size depictions of small wild flower posies that I have made (and left), painted in watercolour on paper. They are float mounted on simple white wooden frames size 22x27cm. Each one is part of my ongoing ‘Votive Offerings’ project. To purchase please click on the ‘buy it now’ button, or contact me directly.
Buttercup – Radiance
‘Your splendour shines like the sun’
Herb Robert – Steadfastness
‘I am yours come what may’
Forget me not – Remembrance
‘You are always in my thoughts’
Strawberry – Perfection
‘You are perfect to me’
Forget me Not – Remembrance
‘Think of me often’