The rose simply has to be the most well-known flower of all. Everyone is familiar with it and knows what it looks like. However, what many people don’t know is that there are several thousands of varieties! They are put in alphabetic order, because the list would be too long otherwise.
The rose has symbolised love and romance for many centuries now. As such, it is sold more than any other flower for Valentine’s Day. But why do roses symbolise love? There are three different myths about the origins of the rose (all of them very romantic)
Whatever the truth behind the rose’s origins may be, it has been around for ages. Fossilised wild roses have been found that date back 35 million years. In Asia, the cultivation of roses was begun 5,000 years ago. The rose then spread from Asia across the rest of the world. In antiquity, roses were used for medicinal purposes and also as a base for perfume. Rosa gallica in particular is still used for medicinal purposes and in perfume to this day.
The symbolism of the rose
Roses have a great variety of meanings, depending on their colour and the number of roses being given. Here are the meanings of the various colours of roses:
Of course, red roses symbolise romance and love, but also fervour, passion, longing, appreciation and gratitude. In short, it is the perfect colour to give to a lover.
Light pink or salmon-coloured roses
This colour signifies sweetness, elegance and romance as well as admiration and joy. As such, it is a colour that lends itself well to being given to a lover, but is also used a great deal in Mother’s Day bouquets.
White roses are special; they generally symbolise cleanliness, innocence and purity, but also signify friendship, connection and truth. As such, they are suitable for giving to a really close friend.
Dark pink roses
This colour represents royalty, magic and mystery, but also familiarity, homeliness and an atmospheric quality. A great colour to bring when visiting someone’s home!
The yellow rose symbolises energy, strength and cheerfulness as well as forgiving, friendship and connection. As such, it is a good rose to give to a good friend.
Orange roses symbolise conviviality, warmth and fun.
Certain numbers of roses also have symbolic meanings of their own:
1 I still love only you
2 Reciprocal love, generally used for marriage proposals
3 Three roses symbolise you, your partner and your relationship
5 I love you so much
7 Affirmation: I am crazy about you
10 You are perfect!
11 You are my darling; I love you the most!
12 Thanks for everything
13 The Valentine’s Day number; a secret admirer
15 I am sorry
24 I think of you every moment of every day
50 My love for you is unconditional
99 I will love you forever