Perhaps the most famous of all flowers, the rose has been a prominent symbol for many millennia. The facets of this flower’s symbolic meaning are almost innumerable, but one of the easiest ways to catalog those facets is by the color of individual blossoms.
The symbolism of the yellow rose is less extensive than its red and white cousins, but the flower still carries a number of interesting – and sometimes contradictory – connotations. Its color links it to the sun, and in alchemy the yellow rose is a symbol of compassion and humanity.
During the Victorian Era, floriography or the “language of flowers” – which used specific blossoms to send symbolically coded messages – became immensely popular, and yellow roses embodied several different values; while they could be used to represent joy or friendship, more common meanings were jealousy and romantic rivalry. These latter meanings are possibly due to the symbolism of yellow itself; one of the color’s many connotations is of treachery/infidelity, so a flower of the same color would carry some of the same meaning.
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