Any child knows that only an odd number of flowers should be given to a person, otherwise misfortune and even death may befall him. This superstition has become so deeply embedded in our lives that we strictly observe it. Do you know where this belief came from and why an even number of flowers are carried only to the dead. Let's try to understand the nature of this prejudice.
When did the superstition about not giving an even number of flowers appear?
This superstition appeared in Russia in pagan times. The Magi of the East Slavic tribes believed that even numbers personify the completion of the life cycle, that is, death. Hence the proverb that "trouble does not come alone." Odd numbers, according to the idea of our ancestors, on the contrary, symbolized life and acted as a kind of amulet against those evil spirits that could harm a person.
By the way, many florists are sure that in Slavic traditions there was no custom to give an odd number of flowers to the living and an even number to the dead, and they believe that “we adopted the tradition from the Japanese, whose hieroglyph“ four ”is the same as the hieroglyph“ death ” ... It is interesting that in Georgia, on the contrary, an even number (a pair) of flowers are given to the living "for good luck", and an odd number is brought to the cemetery, "so that the deceased does not take happiness from the living."
The pre-Christian belief has survived to this day, because we give each other an odd number of flowers, and we put an even number on the grave of a deceased person.
Do you know that a gift bouquet obeys an unwritten rule: "odd up to a dozen", that is, the number of flowers matters if there are three, five, seven, nine or eleven. It is customary to bring an even number of ten or fewer stems as a sign of mourning at funeral ceremonies.
Is it possible to give an even number of flowers in other countries?
Of course. It turns out that giving an even number of flowers only for funerals is accepted only in the countries of the former USSR. In the USA, for example, the most popular gift bouquet is one of a dozen roses, and tight-fisted Germans give their beloved bouquets of eight. An exception is France, where the same ideas about the number of flowers in a bouquet, like the Slavs.