The Meaning of Black Roses

Like the color black itself, black roses are beautiful, mysterious, elegant, and deeply significant. In different cultures and various situations, they can also represent a myriad of meanings. Let’s take a look at the origins, history, and current cultural place of black roses. 

The Origins Of Black Roses

Real black roses do not occur in nature organically. Some breeds get pretty close, though. Roses that are very dark red or jade sometimes appear almost black. They grow in Turkey and other places along the Mediterranean and Black Seas due to the pH of the soil and water.

More commonly, the use of dyes has been used across various cultures for millennia to change the color of roses. Roses can be dyed black by adding dark color agents to the water of white or dark red roses.

Black Roses Throughout History

The earliest known appearance of the black rose attached to a specific meaning was in Ancient Greece and Ancient Rome, which makes sense with their Mediterranean locale. In these ancient cultures, black roses symbolized strength and power and were sometimes tied to masculinity.

In the 19th century, the “language of roses” emerged, in which giving or receiving different shades of this fragrant flower carried specific meaning. According to this tradition, a black rose could symbolize a variety of things, including death (the most common), hatred, or drastic change (similar to a living death and rebirth). 

Since then, various groups have adopted the symbol of the black rose for different reasons. According to lore, the Sicilian mafia would send a black rose as an omen for murder during their ascendency in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. 

Around the same time, the global anarchist movement adopted the black rose as their symbol. To this day, anarchists use a black rose, and an anarchist publishing company based in Montreal, Canada, is called Black Rose Publishing.

The Meaning Of Black Roses Today

Black roses remain tremendously meaningful, and much of their symbolism has endured from the 19th-century language of roses. They can still represent death, though in a more sympathetic and less foreboding manner.

In addition to the end of life, they can also represent the end of any other significant experience or event, including a relationship or even a graduation or retirement. Black roses are also frequently used in pop culture - songs, movies, books, and more - to symbolize tragedy, hatred, or dark suggestions from a jilted lover.

Finally, black roses are the perfect decoration for a Halloween or Dia de los Muertos party or an elegant centerpiece or party favor for a black-tie event. 

Black Roses In A Box

Black roses can make a wonderfully symbolic gift or a unique decoration for many occasions. Whether you’re conveying your heartfelt sympathy for the loss of a loved one, celebrating a “rebirth” moment in someone’s life, or just trying to give flowers in a person’s favorite color, black roses in a box make the perfect gift.

Shop black roses from Le Jardin Infini, or order a custom arrangement using black roses to create a letter, number, or pattern to commemorate a special occasion.
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