Rose Color Meanings - Symbolism, Number, and History.
January 19, 2023
Many people wonder what rose flower meanings, color, numbers, and symbolism of giving a specific amount of them means. These factors are deeply rooted in history; choosing the color of your roses and the number you give makes a difference in the message you’re trying to send.
You can find out here if you’ve wondered which color rose to give for each occasion, how many to give, and what it symbolizes to give them. This will help you choose the best rose flower bouquet to express yourself no matter what you want to say!
Rose Meanings: The Language of Flowers
According to the Greeks, roses originated from Adonis, the mortal lover of the goddess Aphrodite. He was born from a deceptive union between King Theias and his daughter Myrrha. But when the king realized that Myrrha had tricked him, he gave chase with a sword in hand. Aphrodite helped protect Myrrha by turning her into a tree.
In his anger, the king shot the tree with an arrow which split it in half. That’s how Adonis was born from the tree. Aphrodite took him in and raised him as her own. He grew up to be a hunter, and one day, he came across one of Aphrodite’s former lovers, Ares, in the form of a wild boar. The boar attacked Adonis, and Aphrodite heard his cries, running to him to find him at death’s door. His blood had turned into roses when it touched the ground.
Another version has it that Aphrodite’s feet were cut on the thorns of the roses and turned red. Whatever you believe, roses are most commonly thought of with love and all things romantic. The colors and the number of them given will also change their meaning so they can be given for many occasions.
What Does a Rose Symbolize?
The rose is such a gorgeous flower. It has been the subject of sonnets and famed words from the greats like Shakespeare. When you give a rose, it can symbolize several things. It depends on your color and how many roses you choose to give. Generally, though, they can convey the following things:
Romance and Passion
What Does The Color of Roses Mean?
The color of the rose you give can signify many things without uttering a word. If you’re unsure of what color rose to select for a bouquet for someone, this guide can help you choose wisely.
MEANING & SYMBOLISM
Red roses most commonly mean love and passion. However, they can also mark bravery and send a congratulatory message, just like when you see them give a blanket of red roses to the winner of thoroughbred racing in Kentucky. They make a solid and lasting impression of beauty and are the iconic rose color for showing love.
Passion & Desire
Purity & Sincerity
Love at First Sight
MEANING & SYMBOLISM
Another vibrant color for roses is burgundy, dark red flowers expressing deep devotion. They are also slightly different, making them more unique than giving red roses to express your intense adoration.
MEANING & SYMBOLISM
White roses, one of the oldest varieties, can mean various things, from purity and innocence to reverence and worthiness. Brides and even the Pope wear white, symbolizing this pure and loyal innocence. You can give white roses to bring peace to those grieving as well.
Young love, innocence, purity, virtue
Spiritual peace, unity, reverence
Everlasting love, grace, eternal loyalty
What Does The Number of Roses Mean?
The number has much to say when you give roses and the color you choose. Use this guide to help you know how many roses you should send!
- One rose symbolizes love at first sight.
- Two roses say you are deeply in love with the person you give them to.
- Three roses tell them you love them, loud and clear.
- Six roses mean you want them to be yours, which is ideal when you’re dating and want to take things to a new level.
- Seven roses signify your infatuation.
- Eight roses support a friend or family member going through a great deal.
- Nine roses mean eternal love. You give this number when you want to spend your life with that person.
- Twelve roses are for someone you love and a way to ask them to be with you.
- Twenty-one roses provide a symbol of commitment.
- Twenty-four roses: Give them this number of rose flowers, and let them know they are always on your mind.
- Thirty-six roses remind you of your love of all those romantic moments.
- Fifty roses are nothing short of pure and unwavering love.
Rose Spiritual Meanings
When fully blooming, a rose symbolizes spiritual enlightenment. And the thorns represent the struggles that help us learn and adapt.
People from some cultures associated the rose flower with goddesses. The Greeks associated roses with Aphrodite, the goddess of love; the Egyptians associated it with Isis, and Christians associate the Virgin Mary with roses.
The Persians and Turks cultivated roses for centuries before the Crusades happened in the Middle East. In contrast to the bloody battles, the knights would return beautiful roses home to Europe.
Muslims feel roses have spiritual meanings and come from drops of Mohammad’s sweat that fell to the ground. Likewise, Christians thought they came from the blood of Jesus and the Virgin Mary.
Roses Meanings in Different Cultures
Around the world, different cultures have different meanings for roses. Head to Catalonia in Spain on April 23rd for St. George's Day, when people give red roses to their partners to show love.
In Italy, you can give red roses as a sign of love and passion. Additionally, roses in even-numbered bouquets mean mourning and are used for funerals and grieving. White roses are given for condolences in Germany, which is also true in many other places. In Wales, they are used on the graves of young children.
Over in South Korea, they have Rose Day, much like Valentine’s Day, and it is held on May 14th, and couples give roses to each other to show love and devotion. And in Japan, white roses are a pure gesture of innocence and silence. Meanwhile, red roses show strong love, passion, and romance.
Roses Throughout The Ages/History
Throughout history, roses have been highly coveted. They likely began in Asia nearly 5,000 years ago. Even Confucius mentions them in his writings of the Imperial Gardens from 500 B.C. There were also hundreds of books on roses in the emperor’s library. At the time of the Han Dynasty, gardeners were cultivating beautiful roses.
During the Roman Empire, the emperors would shower guests with rose petals at epic dinner gatherings. Since roses can also mean confidential secrecy, they’d hang them on the ceilings to remind attendees that anything said while drunk with wine under the roses was to stay a secret. That’s how we have the term “sub rosa,” which means “under the rose.”
Created by the Greeks Aphrodite, the Romans enhanced this flower to show beauty and love. In Ancient Egypt, rose petals were found in many of the tombs. There were paintings of roses in the tomb of Thutmose IV, a pharaoh of the 18th dynasty.
Roses were also a symbol of the civil wars in the 15th century in England. The red rose was for the House of Lancaster, and the House of York used the white rose. Then years later, both colors of the rose flower were included in one symbol. And roses were also treasured in the West. We still think of it when we inhale roses' lovely aromas.
Frequently Asked Questions
Which rose color can express your sentiments? These FAQ questions should clear up the mystery behind them.
Q. What color rose to express love?
A. Red is the iconic color of love for roses, embodying everything that makes for a phenomenal love story. It conveys passion, desire, and true love, so it is always the most popular flower to give on Valentine’s Day.
Q. What color of rose means death?
A. While black roses are such a dark red that they appear black, they are neither here nor there. Giving black roses can symbolize death and send a goodbye message. However, it represents rebirth, turning a negative into a positive frame of mind.
Q. What color of rose means “I miss you”?
A. If you miss someone and want to tell them, a bouquet of roses is a beautiful idea. Pink, peach, or cream colors are the ideal way to say this. You can give them in any color or arrange them to show how you feel.
Q. What color of rose mean friendship?
A. If you want to show a friend they are everything to you, you should send yellow roses. They symbolize joy and friendship. The warm and cheerful color shows that you care and express love in a non-romantic way. Once upon a time, these meant jealousy in the Victorian era, but today, yellow roses are synonymous with friendship, joy, and caring.
Q. What color of rose means sadness?
A. Several colors of roses could show sadness. Black is one of the most common ways, particularly in the West. It shows remorse, sorrow, and mourning. But another way that may be easier to find is by sending medium pink roses, which can show grieving.
Q. What color of rose means “I’m sorry”?
A. You will want to choose either red or yellow to apologize. Red is best to apologize for romantic love, like a spouse or significant other. Yellow is better for a friend or family member, so you can say you’re sorry with your words and back it up with a bouquet.
Q. What color of rose means forgiveness?
A. Again, yellow roses come to the rescue. If you desire forgiveness from a friend, give them yellow roses to show them you mean what you say when you apologize for something wrong.
Q. What color of rose means peace?
A. The purest color, white, is the best one to convey peace. White roses mean purity and innocence. They are also chosen for bridal arrangements because they represent young love and eternal loyalty. You don’t need to be married to have white roses, but you should choose them to create peace in your space.
Q. What color of rose means hope?
A. White roses also give hope and symbolize a fresh start for the future. You can give them at graduations and other happy occasions to send your best wishes and thoughts for their journey.
Q. What color of rose is for healing?
A. You can send medium pink roses if someone is on the mend from being ill or recovering from surgery. These are wonderful for cheering up someone who is improving and helping you express this sentiment sweetly.
Q. What color of rose means “get well soon”?
A. Any cheerful color will say “get well soon” when giving roses. The brightest flowers are best for this message. Yellow roses are an ideal bouquet to send. Their bright color and beautiful aroma will make anyone feel better.
Conclusion: What is the Symbolism of a Rose?
As you can see, the rose holds so much symbolism in its petals, and it will depend on the colors you choose and the number of roses you send to that person. As such, roses can express love, friendship, sympathy, joy, condolences, congratulations, and every sentiment.
Knowing how many roses to send is also important, though if you have someone who loves a particular color of rose, don’t let its meaning stop you. Send them their favorite color in a bouquet today, even for no reason.
The beauty of roses is that we can use them in many ways to make a statement without saying a word. Not everyone can find the right words to say how they feel, so you let them speak for you in the most beautiful and spectacular ways when you choose roses.
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