Was anyone else here incensed by

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Geoff Whitfield

Member
Shelley My Dear, As an ex florist you may be able to cast some light on this one - or it may have been a custom perculiar to the South West of England.
Whilst carrying out some research into a couple of victims of the Empress of Ireland disaster I visited the church where they had been married shortly before and where their remains had been returned to and duly buried. Whilst there I met the local "aged lady" - every village has one! who recalled the funeral as a small child and said that the couple were placed in caskets with a white ribbon tied around both their wrists (linking the coffins together in fact) this ribbon was then cut half way through which symbolised young love tragically severed. Ever heard of that one?
 
Shelley Dziedzic

Shelley Dziedzic

Member
Actually Geoff Old Bean- I am ex-lots of things but am still a florist on weekends. The little business is Sanctaflora (classier than Holy Blossoms!). Mostly I do church flowers and wedding work. To answer your question, the custom of the white ribbon bands is symbolic of wedded bliss tragically cut short in its prime. In funeral statuary this is often represented by a column which is chopped off half way up,or two entertwined rings broken at the halfway point. The priest, at the wedding service will bind the forearms of the bride and groom with the white silk stole around his neck to joint the couple in the eyes of the church. In Greek Orthodox and Russian church, two white crowns of flowers joined by white ribbons are placed on the heads of the groom and bride, then crossed and interchanged. The floral funeral arts did not truly flourish until Victorian times when excessive floral tribute became more common. A closed book of flowers was a theme for an adult deceased, a sheaf of wheat harvested for an elderly one, heart, anchor and cross for Faith Hope and Charity, a pillow of flowers for Eternal Sleep. The Victorians were mad for symbolism and language of flowers. This reached a fever pitch by the 1890's and even trickled into the Titanic era. I have super sites on this stuff if interested- this is one of my rabid passions. (poor thing, needs to get a life- heads on the ET Board sadly shaking). Morticia
 
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