“The Flower Manual” by Thomas King

by Ann Neilson

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From Godey’s Lady’s Book, July, 1849

In this post I wish to share a delightful list of clever puns, found in the July, 1849 issue of Godey’s Lady’s Book. In his article, the author humorously attaches various flowerswith their “intended” recipient. I’ll leave it at that. 

The Flower Manual
Thomas King

The following directions for the appropriate distribution of flowers are ingenious and amusing. We are much obliged to the gentleman who suggested the plan, and hope he will receive, from the friends of the Lady’s Book, plenty of “Forget-me-nots.”

I would give—
To Heroes, “Laurels.”
To the Cruel, “Barberry.”
To the Wounded, “Balsam.”
To the Afflicted, “Heart’s Ease.”
To the Persecuted, “Balm of Gilead.”
The Housewives, “Thrift.”
To Murderers, “Devil in a Bush.”
To Banditti, “Deadly Night Shade.”
To Victoria, A “Crown Imperial.”
To the Grand Seignor, A “Turk’s Cap.”
To Priests, A “Monk’s Head.”
To the Lady Mayoress, “London Pride.”
To the Chancellor of Exchequer, “Penny Royal.”
To those who love kissing, “Tulips.”
To Lawyers, “Honesty.”
To Ploughmen, “Milk Maids.”
To the Lassies, “Lad’s Love.”
To the Vain, “Coxcombs.”
To the Malicious, “Black Hellebore.”
To the Restless, “Poppies.”
To your wife, “Yew.”
To Eliza, “Sweet William.”
To Broadway Beaux, “Painted Ladies.”
To Beauties, “Venus’s Looking Glass.”
To those who Sigh in Secret, “Love in a Mist.”
To little Girls, “Wax Work.”
To the Nervous, “Valerian.”
To Apothecaries, “Senna.”
To Perfumers, “Jasmines and Violets.”
To Writing Masters, “Jonquill.”
To the Low Spirited, “Lavender.”
To the Precise, “Primroses.”
To the Learned, “Sage.”
To the Wicked, “Rue.”
To Spinsters, “Bachelor’s Buttons.”
To the Frigid, “Snow Drop.”
To the Huntsman, “Larkspur.”
To the fair Recluse, “Lily of the Valley.”
To Tobacconists, “Virginia Stock.”
To Triflers, “Catch Fly.”
To the deserted Damsel, “Willow.”
To Peace Makers, “Everlasting.”
To Masons, “Stone Crop.”
To the Notable, “Thyme.”
To the Idle, “Birch.”
To my best Friend, “Forget-me-not.”