Violets during the time of Napoleon were more than just an adored flower and scent.
They were also a symbol of secret communication.
After Napoleon's first abdication and during his exile in Elba, there began to be rumblings about his return. The majority of the French did not appreciate the Bourbons being restored to the throne and they longed for their emperor.
And so they began to exchange allusions to violets in their conversation. A simple question of "Do you like violets?" might elicit a response of "I like violets-they return in the spring." Or even something more pointed as "just like violets, HE will return in the spring."
Secret Bonapartists began to exchange a print which gave them hope and also served as a communication to other supporters of Napoleon. It showed a bouquet of violets with silhouettes of the Emperor, the Empress and their son, the King of Rome, hidden among the leaves and blossoms.
It's the same print that we use on our label for the Violets of Malmaison soap. (see below)
And if you are unfamiliar with rest of the story, yes, Napoleon did return to France in the spring--with the violets.