Archiver > FOLKLORE > 1999-05 > 0925684702

From: Kath <>
Subject: [FOLKLORE-L] cont'd Celtic Herbs
Date: Sun, 02 May 1999 15:38:22 -0700


Tanacutum Vulgare
Other Names:

Medicinal Uses:
Used internally and externally for gout, roundworm, ague,
spasms, epilepsy, bruises, strains, colic, hysteria, skin
diseases, and to prevent miscarriage. Thought to purify the
humours of the body, and to be especially good for the
heart. Used to preserve dead bodies.

Used recreationally, and possibly magically, to obtain a
giddy high. It's usefulness in treating hysteria may
indicate that it was formerly used as a remedy for
enchantments. The herb's ability to drive away flies and
its ability to stave off decay on flesh was seen as evidence
of its magical nature.

Other Uses:
Young petals were used to flavour cakes, puddings and

Tested Properties:
Bitter, Aromatic, Mucilaginous, Nutritive, Astringent.


Trailing Pearlwort
Scottish Gaelic:

Carried as a protective herb. Believed to relieve labour
pains when placed under the right knee of a woman in
childbirth. It was traditionally fed to cows to protect
both the milk and the calf. The herb prevented the family
members from abduction by the Sidhe if place above a home's
door. It was also used by girls as a love charm; if you
pull nine roots and knot them into a ring, then hold the
ring in your mouth while seeking a kiss from the man you
desire... the man will be yours.



Scottish Gaelic:
Other Names:
Dragon's Claw (in Scotland), Common Vervain, Verbena,
Simpler's Joy, Holy Herb, Tears of Isis, Tears of Juno,
Persephonion, Demetria, Frog-foot, Verbinaca, Peristerium,
Juno's Tears, Mercury's Moist Blood, Pigeon's Grass,
Columbine, Sagmina

Medicinal Uses:
Used for ailments of the eye, thinning and ailing hair,
sleeplessness, inveterate headache, scrofulous disease,
indolent ulcers, and sore throat.

A sacred herb associated with visions and prophecy; the
flowers adorned altars (it was supposedly as favoured by the
Druids as Mistletoe). The herb was also used to make
protective wreaths or magical hoops, and was also an
ingredient in charms for love.
Vervain was sprinkled about the dining chamber as it
supposedly made the guests merrier. It is without any odour
or taste, which is regarded as magical or Otherworldly. The
reputation for being Pagan has clung to the plant as it was
regarded as surpassingly sacred in pre-Christian times; worn
around the neck as an amulet (that rendered the wearer
inviolate) and widely employed in rituals. A country belief
holds that the devil revealed Vervain as a secret, and a
divine medicine, to men. Vervain is supposed to strip a
witch of her will.

Other Uses:
Pigeons are attracted to the plant.

Tested Properties:
Sedative, anticoagulant. Astringent.

Water Buttercup

Caltha Palustris
Scottish Gaelic:
Other Names:
Marsh Marigold, Mare-blobs, Marsh Horsegowl, Marsh Gowl,
Marsh Golden Flower, Bublicans, Meadowbrights, Crazies,
Christ's Eyes, Bulls' Eyes, May Blobs, Drunkards, Water
Caltrops, Wild Bachelor's Buttons Verrucaria, Solsequia,
Solsequium, Sponsa Solis

Medicinal Uses:
Marsh Marigold was considered a most effective treatment for
weak bloodlessness (anaemia), and overall for bones and
Also used for headache, giddiness, coated tongue, diarrhoea,
intermittent, small or rapid pulse, heaving of the limbs,
fits, unhealthy eruptive skin, and warts.

Other Uses:
Employed as a mild dye (yellow).

Tested Properties:
Astringent, Aromatic. A vulnerary.


Achillea Millefolium, Achillea Ptarmiga
Stratiotes Chiliophullos
Irish Gaelic: Athair Tal'uin

Other Names:
Holy Herb, Milfoil, Nosebleed, Gearwe, Sanguinary, Thousand
Leaf, Old Man's Pepper, Soldiers' Woundwort, Staunch Grass,
Carpenters' Weed, Bloodwort, Old Man's Mustard, Bad Man's
Plaything, Devil's Plaything, Devil's Nettle, Militaris,

Medicinal Uses:
The hairy filaments of the leaves were inhaled to cause
nosebleed and cure headache; as well it was a famed herb for
staunching blood flow in all forms. Also used for hysteria,
flatulence, heartburn, colic, epilepsy, rheumatism,
toothache, colds, internal bleeding, loss of appetite, ague,
sore throat, sore nipples, heavy menstruation, piles, cuts
and contusions, eliminates toxins. This herb intensifies
the efficacy of other herbs when taken in conjunction.

Widespread use as a love charm (when picked in a certain
fashion while speaking certain phrases); hung in homes for
Worn in a little bag about the neck to bring the bearer
success, and to bring about the transmission of magical
secrets. Very famous as one of the herbs of the "Lancashire
Witches", which one admitted to using to cure distemper and
in divination.
Brought by bridesmaids to weddings for 'seven years love'.
Used in divination, especially weather. Considered a sacred
herb; picked at Midsummer. It's usefulness in treating
hysteria may indicate that it was formerly used as a remedy
for enchantments.

Tested Properties:
Bitter, Aromatic and Astringent.

the end ~

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