Talk:Language of flowers

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It is well-known that the Japanese have an intricate flower-oriented language system called Hanakotoba however I can not seem to find a non-geocities authoritative reference for it at this time. I would appreciate any assistance in finding a non-Japanese-character webpage to support this reference. PiPhD 00:17, 2 January 2007 (UTC)

Funny, I came to this talk page to request the same thing.--SeizureDog 05:30, 3 March 2007 (UTC)

YOU NEED SOME DEFINITION ON HAWAIIAN FLOWERS —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:10, 7 September 2007 (UTC)

I laughed so hard when i saw this, The lily is the death flower. Has been since roman times. Even today, you take a lily to a funeral. ( (talk) 05:16, 20 August 2009 (UTC))

expansion of list?[edit]

Gertrude Jobes' book Diotionary of Mythology, Folklore, and Symbols has a very extensive discussion on the symbolic meaning of hundreds of flowers and other plants. There are almost certainly other sources on the subject as well. Would the other editors of this page like to see addition of such content or not. One possible problem would be the extremely abbreviated format used in the source. It lists only short descriptions of the meanings, making the possibility of plagarism, intentional or unintentional, a real one. John Carter 15:04, 29 September 2007 (UTC)

I think as long as its referenced, we'll be fine. The meanings vary from book to book, and one of the more interesting aspects of this field is the comparison of meanings in the flowers. Floriographer (talk) 18:22, 26 February 2008 (UTC)


When I first learn about flower codes as a child it was called "tussy-mussy." Is that term still in use? BethEnd (talk) 05:58, 9 December 2007 (UTC)

It is still in use, but is also applied as the sweet-smelling bunch of flowers used to ward off sickness. The term Tussie-Mussie was mostly used as a description for these posies in the US during the Victorian era of flower language. Floriographer (talk) 18:18, 26 February 2008 (UTC)

I'm not convinced that the term "tussie-mussie" was generally used for a posy or nosegay during the 19th century. The Oxford English Dictionary has no citations for it between the early 18th century and the 20th century, and I've done searches at and on Google Books without turning up more than one or two 19th-century uses of the term--as against many hundreds both for "posy" and "nosegay." It appears that the Victorian fad for "tussie-mussies" is a myth propagated by 20th- and 21st-century flower aficionados. (talk) 18:40, 19 May 2008 (UTC)

Purple Lilacs[edit]

The caption on the purple lilacs picture does not match the description in the table below. In the picture, purple lilacs are "first love" and in the table, "death". Now that's presumably something you don't want to mix up. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 10:41, 21 February 2008 (UTC)

This depends upon two things, first, what they are placed with, and second, which book you take the meaning from. The meanings of he flowers were different in different dictionaries. This is why it was imperative that the recipient of the flowers you were sending shared the same dictionary! Floriographer (talk) 18:28, 26 February 2008 (UTC)

See also the Syringa page. The current version links to Language of flowers as a reference, but contradicts the current version of Language of flowers.

This looks like the change that caused the disagreement: -- (talk) 13:29, 21 February 2009 (UTC)

Purple Lilacs[edit]

"The Turkish "Salem", or language of objects, developed to communicate any message without the need to write." - Can we get a citation for this? A google search in English and Turkish results in this same exact line on several pages, but no other information. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:10, 19 May 2009 (UTC)

White Carnations[edit]

Here they are said to represent disdain, while on the Carnation page, they say the represent first love. Which is it? Or can they represent both? Maladroitmortal (talk) 19:20, 16 June 2009 (UTC)

I'd like to see more information about the carnation to begin with. Again, a representation of disdain or love? Could it depend on the flower color or purpose of the decoration? — Preceding unsigned comment added by Acole511 (talkcontribs) 20:59, 1 November 2016 (UTC)

Merger with Meanings of flowers[edit]

Why not merge the Meanings of flowers article with this one? There is so much overlap of that article with this one that the other appears virtually redundant. Thoughts? — SpikeToronto (talk) 20:52, 20 July 2009 (UTC)

You're right, it might as well redirect here. Indeterminate (talk) 22:16, 20 July 2009 (UTC)
Makes sense to me. John Carter (talk) 22:38, 20 July 2009 (UTC)
Agree. Ceoil (talk) 23:49, 20 July 2009 (UTC)

Well, before redirecting it here, someone familiar with this article should make sure that any info in the Meanings of flowers article, not contained herein, gets added to this (Language of flowers) article. That way, any information that the editors of the other article have placed in it will not be forever lost. SpikeToronto (talk) 00:58, 21 July 2009 (UTC)

I'm not sure there is much of use to be saved, tbh. Ceoil (talk) 19:12, 23 July 2009 (UTC)

Accordingly, I have redirected the Meanings of flowers article to this article. I did not blank out the text therein; it is all still there, below the redirect. If I have redirected prematurely, incorrectly, or in violation of a wikipolicy, please so inform and where possible correct. Thanks! — SpikeToronto (talk) 21:53, 23 July 2009 (UTC)

No, that seems fine. Thanks, good work. Ceoil (talk) 22:01, 23 July 2009 (UTC)

Abecedary & Abatina[edit]

According to the "Word Detective":


Abecedary & Abatina are not actual flowers. I know nothing of this subject so I leave it to others to do the editing.

Here's the quote:

Then came the internet, and platoons of people, or possibly monkeys, began furiously typing Greenaway’s text (which is still under copyright) into web sites. The very first two entries in the text as rendered on dozens of web sites today are “Abecedary,” which supposedly connotes “volubility” (talkativeness) and “Abatina,” said to signal “fickleness.” But as far as I can tell, “Abecedary” and “Abatina” are not and have never been the names of flowers, and, significantly, the only Victorian glossaries that include them are apparently Greenaway’s and the 1892 volume. In fact, since I don’t have a copy of the Greenaway book, I can’t swear she includes them. They may well be relics of typographical errors in the 1892 “borrowing” of her work.

The first entry seems to be a title which was accidentally added in (ie the entire book is a Abecedary for producing volubility with flowers). As for Abatina, I've always thought it to be A Batina (a stick). (talk) 23:46, 22 April 2013 (UTC)


Does anyone have any citations for the term "Floriography"? To my knowledge, only "Florigraphy" was in use. John Ingram's "Flora symbolica: or, The language of flowers", as well as The New International Encyclopædia (Ed. Daniel Coit Gilman/Harry Thurston Peck, Frank Moore Colby, Vol VII, New York 1903, p 523) list "Florigraphy". I could not find any other use of the term so far. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:15, 17 October 2011 (UTC)

The introduction reads like marketing copy, not a wikipedia article.[edit]

... and considering that it's mostly a verbatim copy of [2], it pretty much is. 2001:470:1F0B:20D:8E89:A5FF:FE64:8C44 (talk) 09:51, 29 October 2012 (UTC)

Objective description, please[edit]

Only objective facts should be written.

Flower languages are not biologically innate to each plant species, but associations are done by human. Thus you have to tell "where" and "when". Thus, "the meaning of anemone is sincerity." is OUT. Even if you claim "it's so in Japan today", then you have to clarify the exact meaning. Does it mean, for example, many Japanese conceive that anemone flowers mean sincerity? And you have to prove it (WP:BURDEN) by citing appropriate sources (WP:RELIABLE). Many websites are babbles. Books are often work of authors' free imagination.

It's ok to cite some examples from historical materials, like Language of Flower by Kate Greenaway in the late 19th century. But don't list all. Wikipedia is not a random list (WP:IINFO) nor a repository of pubilc domain books (WP:NOTREPOSITORY). There's already some external links which are satisfactory.--Ahora (talk) 08:19, 28 November 2012 (UTC)

Why was the table of meanings removed?[edit]

Why was the table listing the meanings of flowers removed? That was my primary reason for using this page, without it the primary purpouse of the page is gone. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:02, 29 November 2012 (UTC)

It's written in the previous section. Please understand what Wikipedia is not, in particular Wikipedia is not a random collection of information. Anyway, you can find many floriography websites in an instance, and you don't need Wikipedia at all for that purpose. --Ahora (talk) 01:32, 30 November 2012 (UTC)
Unless the long called-for citations can be provided, saying what meanings attach to which flowers according to which sources (when and where) the table has to go. WP isn't here to propagate and perpetuate and authorize particular versions of folklore that's got the kind of volatile variability this stuff has. (talk) 19:19, 26 September 2013 (UTC)

Reasons of revert on 31 dec 2012[edit]

Today I reverted the article to 5 Dec edition. The reasons are:

All these edits were done without understanding what I wrote in #Objective description, please above, and the last one exemplifies it; Statements like "campanula has a fixed meaning «dissapointment»" are myths. See this comparison of 19th century books for example.--Ahora (talk) 05:56, 31 December 2012 (UTC)

Page Deletion[edit]

I understand why the meanings section has been deleted, and for valid reasons, but is there any way I can get the information, though inaccurate from the deleted section back?

I also understand that there are many websites out there for similar information, but I am not using said information for professional content and personally prefer the format previously used in the section of question. Preceding unsigned comment added by User:Unknowncontribs) 18:12, 3 January 2013 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Rainykitteh (talkcontribs) 18:18, January 3, 2013‎

Rainykitteh, do NOT alter "signatures", please. Everyone can, and should leave their signatures by placing four tildes: ~~~~. It'll be changed to your name and the time.

It's an unusual request, but click "view history", and then open an old revision. The URL is fixed, and you can use it as a permalink. (But I don't think old revisions of this page are no better than other websites, nor do I understand how they are "professional".) --Ahora (talk) 04:37, 4 January 2013 (UTC)

Merger proposal[edit]

Plant symbolism is a stub, and the current content could easily be addressed under Language of flowers. The title "Plant symbolism" does suggest a broader concept than the meanings of flowers. For example, the maple leaf as a symbol of Canada might fall under "Plant symbolism", but not "Language of flowers". Current content of Plant symbolism could well be merged here, but perhaps that article should be expanded? Plantdrew (talk) 04:04, 18 October 2013 (UTC)

  • Comment - I'm neutral on this for the moment, while theoretically I see that I could lean toward supporting this, but it is a tough call. I think the merge proposal needs more information--like a proposed outline of the new broader-focused article, before I can get behind it. The first time I searched for this article, I searched for "Flower symbolism" so there is a precedent. The merge proposal to Plant symbolism allows for a larger discussion of symbolism beyond this article--including trees (which has been developed well on wikipedia), references/allusions in history/heraldy/art/literature/music/theology, and an expansion of discussions of cultural concepts from around the world, since this article at present is very Eurocentric in its focus. For instance, there's no discussion of Persian concepts connected with roses (which is connected with the nightingale) but plenty of discussion of western (largely English Victorian) references. A few weeks ago, material was removed from the article, namely a list/table of flowers paired with symbolic meanings, and it was unsourced and undeveloped. Despite being tagged as unsourced for a long time, it was never improved. If that material were to be developed and properly verifiable/sourced it could be spun off as a List of flower symbolism. As this merger proposal develops, keep me informed. I am not ready at this time to support the move without further details and planning.--ColonelHenry (talk) 04:35, 18 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Comment -- I am against merger. I think both articles have significant & inevitable expansion potential. Grye (talk) 17:44, 7 January 2014 (UTC)
  • Comment - I just came across this page and I have to wonder: why just these two pages? Why not Hanakotoba as well? That's the language of flowers/floriography as well, just in a different language. My thought in the end is that it would just make the page too unwieldy. --ip.address.conflict (talk) 18:48, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
  • Comment - Perhaps the chart respecting Flowers could be merged with Language of Flowers, leaving this page for trees, fruits, ferns and other types of plants. Mannanan51 (talk) 18:53, 11 May 2016 (UTC)

Jesus is not compared to a flower[edit]

The article says that Jesus is called or compared to a flower in some way, but the verse that it uses as a reference doesn't use the word "flower", and the closest it comes is "fruit". I realize that these are related, but the fruit is compared to Jesus' followers, not to Jesus himself. Jesus is referred to as a vine. Unless the original language (I believe it is Greek) has a word in it that could be translated as "flower", I think that this should be removed. Any objections? —TeragR disc./con. 20:35, 7 May 2014 (UTC)

The sentence is in is correct as it says plants, but it is off topic, so may as remove the parts about comparison to fruits and plants. Graeme Bartlett (talk) 21:42, 8 May 2014 (UTC)

REMOVE — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:54, 11 March 2015 (UTC)

Not enough examples of flower meanings[edit]

Reading this article, I was a bit disappointed with the information regarding the actual correlations of flowers and their meanings. The article, as of now, only includes a few flowers such as the mimosa and the black rose, but never delves into more common flowers. Daisies, for example, often represent innocence; red roses for love, lilies for mourning, etc. I am not an expert on the subject, but I would find it very useful for this article to be edited in such a way that includes more flowers. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Bargeandnoble (talkcontribs) 19:32, 31 October 2016 (UTC)

Not enough talk about flowers in Shakespeare Section[edit]

I was a bit perplexed when I saw that there was a section of the article discussing flowers in Shakespeare's works yet the only works referenced were Hamlet and The Winter's Tale, and not in great detail. His use of floral life is much, much deeper than that. For example, he discusses wild floral life in A Midsummer Night's Dream and this is never touched upon. I propose that we add more to this as I feel it will help make the article stronger in general.


EdwardKrauzowicz (talk) 03:22, 2 November 2016 (UTC)