Continuing on with my study in Floriography — the cryptological communication through flower use or arrangement. For the first post covering A and B flowers, as well as a short history on the “language of flowers”, click HERE. For C and D flowers, click THIS LINK, and for F and G flowers this is the BLOG LINK.
Heather ~ White means luck and protection, wishes coming true; purple means beauty or admiration of a person. Growing on the windy hills of Scotland, the white wild heather has come to symbolize protection. Early in the history of Scotland, there were many wars of competing factions. Throughout these battles of position and power, white heather was worn as an amulet of protection.
Honeysuckle ~ Happiness, plain and simple is what the honeysuckle stands for in the Victorian interpretation; also devoted love, fidelity. Beyond the Victoria interpretation of the honeysuckle flower, it also means sweet disposition which might relate to the sweet-smelling aroma that the flowers have and because of the sweet nectar that hummingbirds love so much. Honeysuckle also means fraternal affection or devoted affection in the form of a lover’s embrace.
Hydrangea ~ The Victorians were not as fond of the Hydrangea and considered it a mostly negative plant. The flowers were sent to declare someone a boaster or braggart, or to chastise someone for their frigidity in turning down a claim of romantic love. It also means frigidity because of the Medieval belief that young women who grew or picked Hydrangeas would never find a husband. Blue hydrangeas, particularly, were connected to frigidity, turning down a romantic proposal, asking for forgiveness, and expressing regret. The Old English believed the hydrangea was unlucky for young ladies, that it would keep them from finding a suitable husband. Households would not allow hydrangeas to grow in their gardens, especially near the front door, believing it would curse to the daughters of the house with spinsterhood.
Hyacinth ~ The Victorian interpretations for the hyacinth flower in any color are rashness, play, and games and sports, emphasized by the color red and pink. In Greek mythology, Apollo the sun god and Zephyr the god of the west wind compete for a young boy’s affections. At one point Apollo is teaching Hyakinthos how to throw the discus and Zephyr gets so angry that he blows a gust of wind in Apollo’s direction, which sends the discus hurling back in the direction of Hyakinthos, striking and killing him. Apollo, brokenhearted, notices that a flower springs up from the blood that was spilled and names the flower hyacinth in honor of the boy.
Iris ~ Faith and faithfulness, wisdom, cherished friendship, hope, valor, my compliments, promise in love, purity, modesty, wisdom. In the Victorian times, the iris symbolizes that the friendship you have with someone means so much to you. The iris earned its name from the ancient Greek Goddess Iris, a messenger to the gods who was thought to use the rainbow as a bridge between heaven and earth. By some accounts, the Greeks believed the rainbow was actually the flowing, multi-colored robes of Iris or the flowing veil from her dress. Thus, these flowers were named to honor the Rainbow Goddess and bring favor upon the earth. By the middle ages, France began to use iris flowers to symbolize royalty and power, the shape inspiring the fleur-de-lis as the National symbol for France.
Ivy ~ Wedded love, fidelity, constancy, friendship and affection. Due to the vine qualities of ivy, its resemblance to a cord, it symbolizes a binding that will keep couples and friends close together.
Jonquil ~ Love me; affection returned; desire. All these meanings might have sprung from the Greek myth about Proserpina. The story goes that she was gathering lilies when she was kidnapped by Pluto, the god of the underworld. As Pluto carried her away, Proserpina dropped the lilies and they turned into jonquils, their blossoms dropping down in sorrow for Proserpina.
Jasmine ~ Amiability, wealth, grace and elegance. According to legend, a Tuscan gardener received a jasmine plant from Persian traders and planted it in his private garden. One day, he presented a branch of the jasmine flowers to his beloved. She was so taken by the fragrance she agreed to marry him, and thus began the Tuscan tradition of including jasmine in the bridal bouquet.