What Does A Rose Is a Rose Is a Rose Mean?

A Rose is a Rose is a Rose Meaning

Definition: A thing is what it is.

Origin of a Rose is a Rose is a Rose

This expression comes from the American author Gertrude Stein. It appeared in her poem “Sacred Emily,” which was written in the year 1913 and published in 1922.

Rose is a rose is a rose is a rose

Loveliness extreme.

Extra gaiters, Loveliness extreme.

Sweetest ice-cream.

Pages ages page ages page ages.

Throughout her career, she used it multiple times in her various writing.

The phrase has become so famous that the word rose can be substituted for anything that is as it appears or is what it is.

For instance, if someone’s husband has lied to her in the past and it turns out he lied again, someone might say,

  • A liar is a liar is a liar.

Examples a Rose is a Rose is a Rose

a rose is a rose poem In this example, two friends are talking about a text the man wants to send.

Neha: Hey, Tyrese. How’s it going?

Tyrese: I need your help! I went on a date with this woman, and I really liked her. She sent me a text, and it said, “I enjoyed our date last night.” I’m trying to think of what to respond.

Neha: Really? What do you have so far?

Tyrese: So far I have, “Me too.” And then I was thinking of adding a smiley face.

Neha: That sounds good to me.

Tyrese: Do you think the smiley face is too much? Maybe she’ll think it means I’m desperate.

Neha: I don’t think she’ll think that. A rose is a rose is a rose, and a smiley face is just a smiley face. I think she’ll just think you’re happy to talk to her.

gertrude stein a rose is a rose is a roseIn this example, two office workers are discussing the meaning of a compliment.

Barry: Did you hear what Bob said to me?

Rachel: No, what happened?

Barry: He told me, “Nice shoes.”

Rachel: Oh, that’s nice.

Barry: No, it’s not nice! I think he was being sarcastic! I think he hated my shoes, and was making fun of them.

Rachel: You only think that because you are so insecure about your fashion choices. Sometimes people are just giving you sincere compliments. Sometimes a rose is a rose is a rose.

Barry: I hope you’re right.

More Examples

This excerpt uses the expression in an article about buying roses and other flowers locally.

  • “We’re trying to get people to be more discerning,” said Kasey Cronquist, head of the California Cut Flower Commission. “Historically, in the wholesale flower business, a rose is a rose is a rose, but not anymore….Now you need to ask, ‘Where did this rose come from?’” –LA Times

This excerpt uses the expression to introduce the theme of roses for the article.

  • Gertrude Stein once wrote, “Rose is a rose is a rose is a rose.” But she might have ended up regretting those words after seeing the dizzying number of fashion and home collaborations inspired by that very bloom, which has a major role in Disney’s new, live-action film “Beauty and the Beast,” starring Emma Watson and in theaters today. –LA Times


The expression a rose is a rose is a rose is another way to say that a thing is identical to itself, and that things are themselves.