"How the universal heart of man blesses flowers! They are wreathed
round the cradle, the marriage-altar, and the tomb. The Persian in the
far East delights in their perfume, and writes his love in nosegays;
while the Indian child of the far West claps his hands with glee as he
gathers the abundant blossoms - the illuminated scriptures of the
prairies. The Cupid of the ancient Hindoos tipped his arrows with
flowers, and orange-flowers are a bridal crown with us, a nation of
yesterday. Flowers garlanded the Grecian altar, and hung in votive
wreath before the Christian shrine. All these are appropriate uses.
Flowers should deck the brow of the youthful bride, for they are in
themselves a lovely type of marriage. They should twine round the
tomb, for their perpetually renewed beauty is a symbol of the
resurrection. They should festoon the altar, for their fragrance and
their beauty ascend in perpetual worship before the Most High.
Flowers have a language of their own, and it is this bright particular
language that we would teach our readers. How charmingly a young
gentleman can speak to a young lady, and with what eloquent silence in
this delightful language. How delicately she can respond, the
beautiful little flowers telling her tale in perfumed words; what a
delicate story the myrtle or the rose tells! How unhappy that which
basil, or yellow rose reveals, while ivy is the most faithful of all."
This is actually a "society game" made of flower divination, in which
every person in the company chooses five flowers from a vast bouquet
with as many different flowers of every color as possible, and the
game leader tells him/her what the flowers say about him/her...