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Literary Calligraphy by Susan Loy
Book Cover A Victorian Flower Game

This flower game is adapted from Miss S. C. Edgarton's The Floral Fortune-Teller; a Game for the Season of Flowers, published in Boston by A. Tompkins in 1847.

Prepare a large bouquet of flowers and foliage, using florist's flowers, garden flowers, or dried flowers; pick wild flowers with discretion. You may have to ask your neighbors for donations, and be sure to talk to your local florist in time to special order selected flowers. If fresh flowers are not available, use dried flowers, artificial flowers, seed packets, cards, photos or other graphic reproductions like pictures form a seed catalog. There are many substitutes, although fresh flowers are best.

This flower game can be played as a group where everyone listens in on the floral interpretations or individually as the "fortune teller" circulates around the party or sits at a table to receive quests. The fortune teller can be the host or hostess or another designated person who knows the significance of the flower's five colors and has access to a Language of Flowers dictionary.

Ask each person to choose up to five flowers of different color from the bouquet. The fortune teller then interprets the person's fortune based on the flower's meaning in the Language of Flowers and on the color of the flower as outlined below. The fortune teller can ask the person to draw five flowers of a different color or to draw only one and then perhaps another of a different color; this would depend on the size of the group and the inclination of the fortune teller.

The flower's color determines the type of question being addressed:

1. White flowers - What is or will be the person's character?
2. Red, rose, pink flowers - What is or will be the character of pertinent people in the person's life?
3. Blue flowers - What is or will be the person's love life?
4. Purple flowers - What is or will be the person's worldly fortune?
5. Yellow flowers - What is or will be the person's environment?

Susan Loy's Flowers, the Angels' Alphabet: the Language and Poetry of Flowers provides the most comprehensive flower dictionary available with more than 1,400 flowers and their meaning in the Victorian Language of Flowers.

This 224-page, hard-cover book with dust jacket includes 28 color illustrations by Susan Loy. Autographed copies are available for the same retail price of $31.95, at or by calling 1-800-263-6125 (M-F, 8 am to 5 pm EST).

The book is available at and at book stores nationwide. It was recently chosen as one of the "top ten books of the year" by Independent Publishers and as winner of Benjamin Franklin awards in two categories - gardening and reference.

To order a copy of Flowers, the Angels' Alphabet: the Language and Poetry of Flowers, click here.

The following is a selection of flowers and their meanings from Susan Loy's Flowers, the Angels' Alphabet: the Language and Poetry of Flowers:

WHITE FLOWERS express something about the person's character.

Aster: cheerfulness in old age
China Aster: love of variety
Calla Lily: magnificent beauty
Camellia: perfect loveliness
Cape Jasmine: transport of joy
Carnation: lovely and pure affection, talent
Chrysanthemum: truthful
Clematis: mental beauty
Clover: light hearted
Coriander: merit, hidden worth
Daisy: innocence and beauty
Datura: I dream of thee
Everlasting: always remembered
Gladiolus: strength of character
Honeysuckle: generous and devoted affection
Hyacinth: unobtrusive loveliness; sport, play
Jasmine: amiability Star: winning grace
Lemon Balm: sympathetic
Lilac: humility
Lily: purity
Magnolia: love of nature
Mock Orange/Syringa: fraternal affection, memory
Morning Glory: affection
Myrtle: love
Orange Blossoms: your purity equals your loveliness
Phlox: our souls are united
Rose: love, silence
Snowdrop: hope
Spearmint: warmth of sentiment
Star of Bethlehem: purity
Statice: sympathy
Sweet Alyssum: worth beyond beauty, worthy and beautiful
Violet: modesty

RED, ROSE, AND PINK FLOWERS pertain to the character of pertinent people in the personís life.

Aster: cheerfulness in old age; welcome to a stranger
Bee Balm: value your sympathy
China Aster: love of variety
Double Carnation: lively and pure affection
Double China Aster: sharing of sentiments
Camellia: unpretending excellence
Chrysanthemum: the person loves
Clover: industriousness
Corn Cockle/Rose Campion: gentility
Crape Myrtle: eloquence
Everlasting: always remembered
Foxglove: stateliness
Gladiolus: strength of character
Hibiscus: delicate beauty
Hollyhock: fruitfulness, ambition
Mint: virtue
Nasturtium: heroism
Oak-leaved Geranium: true friendship
Peppermint: cordiality, warmth of feeling
Phlox: our souls are united
Poinsettia: brilliancy
Primrose: unpatronized merit
Rose: love, beauty
Scarlet Fuchsia: taste
Single Pink Carnation: pure love
Spearmint: warmth of sentiment
Sweetbrier: poetry, simplicity
Tulip: declaration of love
Zinnia: thoughts of absent friends

BLUE FLOWERS describe the person's love life.

Aster: cheerfulness in old age
Ageratum: courteous love
Bellflower: constant love
China Aster: love of variety
Corn Flower: a delicacy
Heliotrope: devotion
Hyacinth: constancy; sport, play
Juniper Berries: protection
Morning Glory: affection
Rosemary: remembrance
Salvia: wisdom
Veronica: fidelity

PURPLE FLOWERS predict the person's worldly fortune?

Aster: cheerfulness in old age
Autumn Crocus: do not fear to grow old
Clover: provident (providing for future needs)
Columbine: resolution to win
Dogwood: durability
Double China Aster: bounty
Eternal Flower (Xeranthemum annuum): eternity
Globe Amaranth: immortality
Honesty: honesty
Iris: my compliments
Johnny-jump-up: love in idleness
Lemon-scented Geranium: serenity, tranquility of mind
Lavender: acknowledgement
Sage: domestic virtue
Shooting Star: winning grace
Sweet Alyssum: worth beyond beauty
Sweet William: finesse, stratagem, a smile
Violet: faithfulness, faith

YELLOW FLOWERS pertain to the person's environment?

Buttercup: riches, luster
Corn: abundance
Daffodil: regard
Dandelion: rustic oracle, love's oracle
Evening Primrose: silent love, inconstancy
Fennel: force, strength, worthy of praise
Goldenrod: encouragement
Iris: passion
Johnny-jump-up: tender and pleasant thoughts
Lily: gaiety, playful gaiety
Marigold: sacred affections
Narcissus: self-esteem
Nasturtium: heroism, patriotism
Sunflower: lofty thoughts
Violet: rural happiness

You can order autographed, first edition copies of Flowers, the Angels' Alphabet now at our secure cart!   order online button
    Use this award winning book to:
  • choose wedding flowers;
  • create flower arrangements, dried flower arrangements, or tussie-mussies;  or
  • design other theme gardens such as a memorial garden, a friendship garden, or meditation garden.
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