The color black has always been synonymous with death and mourning. It is thus the color of sadness and farewell. So, many people consider black roses to symbolize bereavement, loss and mortality. Since black represents death, many interpret the black rose to mean vengeance that may lead to the death of a foe. The negative connotations here are far reaching, and make the black rose the least sought after among roses.
But, a more positive meaning does exist for the black rose. It is true that black is the color of death. But death does not always cause mourning. It can also be the beginning of new things, a journey into unexplored territory. The black rose, because it symbolizes death and passing away, also indicates a major change or upheaval in the future.
In that sense, the black rose also means the death of old habits and the old order. It inspires confidence and enthusiasm by signaling the birth of a new era of hope and joy.
This flower, tragic in its dark beauty, is not always symbolic of unhappiness. The Irish have used the lyrics of “the Little Black rose” during their ongoing battle with the British. Similarly, many anarchist and antiauthoritarian groups have also adopted the black rose as a symbol of mutiny and strength. Therefore, the meaning of the black rose also includes courage and resistance.