History and Purpose of the Wedding bouquet

A bride without an exciting flower bouquet in her hand is a rare sight. Peonies, Ranunculus or Peonies are a few flowers to name that qualify the list of wedding bouquets. While most of us would have thought that these bouquets hold no significant meaning or implication other than serving the aesthetic purpose, however it is not true.

          Like most wedding traditions that originate from Ancient Rome, this one too had its root in the Roman Empire. Foremost reason for the brides to carry a bouquet was obviously to ward off the evil spirits and envious evil eyes that jealous villagers might cast off on the bride; during those days any woman who would get married was considered lucky, and villagers would even go as far as of tearing off bride’s gown so that her good luck rub on them as well.

          Interestingly, the bouquet was chosen carefully, by putting together strong smelling flowers whose smell would linger on for long. This Victorian tradition was done to curb the smell that would come from the bodies of brides. Shocking? Well, not exactly. As the tradition stood most weddings would take place during the summer season in June and in May women would have taken their annual bath. Period. Women, however, did not get to shower in the great bath alone because it was men of the house who would have the luxury to bath first. So, once all men were done bathing the leftover water was left for the women to take off the dirt from the bodies they have accumulated over the year. Hence, after one month’s time they would start smelling again, which is why they would carry a bouquet with them so it would hide their body odor. Moreover, it would also help set the mood for the couple; it would spark love and affection between the couple.

          However, we can take comfort in knowing that we were not entirely wrong about wedding bouquets. During Victorian Era, the bouquet the bride would carry held a special meaning in florigraphy.  A range of flowers were selected to convey a sweet message, the groom could select a particular flower and send it to his bride to convey a message while the bride could do the same. As far as the bridal bouquet stood, bride would carry a white camellia bouquet to express admiration for her groom.

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