Flora Symbolica: Flowers in Pre-Raphaelite Art: Few artistic movements capture classic notions of beauty as romantically as the Pre-Raphaelites—a group of nineteenth-century painters and poets who aimed to revive the purer art of the late medieval period. Brilliantly colored and carefully composed, pre-Raphaelite paintings are revered for their idealistic portrayal of women, their emphasis on nature and morality, and their use of literature and mythology. Flowers figure prominently in many of these paintings, the blooms as physically lush as they are laden with symbolism. For this was the Victorian era, when the language of flowers was spoken by everyone.
In this beautiful volume, Debra N. Mancoff, an expert on Pre-Raphaelite art and the floral lexicon presents forty breathtaking examples, which illuminate the meaning of flowers in all aspects of Victorian culture. She offers brief commentaries on individual paintings as well as biographies of the period’s leading artists and their models. A captivating introduction to an artistic movement, this exquisitely produced book is also a romantic keepsake of an artistic sensibility that speaks volumes.