By D.C. Watts
Wisdom of plant names may give perception into mostly forgotten ideals. for instance, the typical crimson poppy is named "Blind guy" because of an outdated superstitious trust that if the poppy have been positioned to the eyes it can reason blindness. Many plant names derived from superstition, folks lore, or primal ideals. different names are basically descriptive and will serve to give an explanation for the which means of the botanical identify. for instance, Beauty-Berry is the identify given to the yank shrub that belongs to the genus Callicarpa. Callicarpa is Greek for gorgeous fruit. nonetheless different names come from literary resources supplying wealthy aspect of the transmission of phrases during the ages.
Conceived as a part of the author's wider curiosity in plant and tree lore and ethnobotanical stories, this absolutely revised variation of Elsevier's Dictionary of Plant Names and Their Origins comprises over 30,000 vernacular and literary English names of crops. Wild and cultivated crops alike are pointed out by means of the botanical identify. additional aspect presents a short account of the that means of the identify and precise observation on universal usage.
* comprises colour images
* such as all Latin phrases with vernacular derivatives
* the main finished advisor for plant scientists, linguists, botanists, and historians
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Additional resources for Dictionary of Plant Lore
In the Balkans, basil in vinegar is recommended to “drive the snake and any other creature out of a man” (Kemp). In the Middle East, it was the herb of grief, and was put on graves. Jews carried sprigs of it to give them strength and endurance (A W Hatfield). Similarly, in Crete, it is a symbol of mourning. Perhaps better known is the plant’s symbolising hatred (Leyel. 1937). The Romans used to sow the seeds with curses through the belief that the more it was abused the better it would prosper.
As far off as South America, there is a similar belief, for balm was used as an ingredient in the ritual bath that is part of a Brazilian healing ceremony (Williams). BEE-KEEPING Beekeepers in the East Riding of Yorkshire used to sprinkle the hive with an elder branch dipped in sugar and water when the bees were ready to swarm (Addy). In Cornwall, too, they say that the inside of hives should be scrubbed with elder flowers to prevent a new swarm from leaving (Courtney). But bees do not seem to like the smell.
CHICKWEED can be applied to a sting, to get the swelling down (Vickery. 1995), or rub MARIGOLD petals on them (Rohde. 1936). WATER MINT is “… good against the stingings of bees and wasps, if the place be rubbed therewith” (Gerard). BEECH (Fagus sylvatica) Apparently a British native only on chalk and limestone in south-east England. Elsewhere it was planted, albeit a very long time ago, as witnessed by place names (see examples in Cameron). In spite of the early spread of the tree, there is very little folklore attached to it, but what there is shows that it is held in high regard.
Dictionary of Plant Lore by D.C. Watts