Black rose (symbolism)
Black roses (roses of black color) do not exist in nature as such, but nevertheless they are often featured in fiction with many different meanings. The flowers commonly called black roses are actually a very dark red color, such as the "black magic", "barkarole", "black beauty" and "baccara" varieties of roses.
Language of Flowers
In the 19th century, the language of flowers became popular. In this code, black roses signify death, hatred, or farewell, but can also mean the overcoming of a long hard journey. They were often used at funerals. A single black rose might be sent by a close friend and or loved one leaving for a war or on a journey from which he did not expect to return. An alternate meaning is 'slavish devotion', since a true black rose is impossible to produce.
During World War II, a group called the White Rose, led by the siblings Hans and Sophie Scholl, formed to oppose the Nazis, but was dismantled and their members were executed. Because of this, some claim that the Nazis used the white rose as a symbol of a traitor and the black rose as a symbol of all being well (victory over the white rose).
The black rose is a rarely used symbol of the anarchist movement.
Black Rose Books was the name of the pre-eminent anarchist bookstore in Montreal and is now the name of a small press imprint headed by anarchist philosopher Dimitrios Roussopoulos. Black Rose was the title of a respected journal of anarchist ideas published in the Boston area during the 1970s, as well as the name of an anarchist lecture series addressed by notable anarchist and libertarian socialists (including Murray Bookchin and Noam Chomsky) into the 1990s.