Dictionary of Plant Lore
Knowledge of plant names can give insight into largely forgotten beliefs. For example, the common red poppy is known as "Blind Man" due to an old superstitious belief that if the poppy were put to the eyes it would cause blindness. Many plant names derived from superstition, folk lore, or primal beliefs. Other names are purely descriptive and can serve to explain the meaning of the botanical name. For example, Beauty-Berry is the name given to the American shrub that belongs to the genus Callicarpa. Callicarpa is Greek for beautiful fruit. Still other names come from literary sources providing rich detail of the transmission of words through the ages.
Conceived as part of the author's wider interest in plant and tree lore and ethnobotanical studies, this fully revised edition of Elsevier's Dictionary of Plant Names and Their Origins contains over 30,000 vernacular and literary English names of plants. Wild and cultivated plants alike are identified by the botanical name. Further detail provides a brief account of the meaning of the name and detailed commentary on common usage.
* Includes color images
* Inclusive of all Latin terms with vernacular derivatives
* The most comprehensive guide for plant scientists, linguists, botanists, and historians
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Very interesting and nicely written from what I could tell but for some reason a little difficult to negotiate around - maybe print it off in order to be able to read without irritation?!
18th century American aphrodisiac Apuleius bark Beith belief berries boiled burn called century charm chewed Cockayne colour comfrey cough cure decoction disease divination doctrine of signatures dream dried drink Dyer elder evil eye fairies fever flowers folk medicine garlic Gerard girl Greek Grigson grow Gypsies hazel herb herbalists holly Indians infusion Ireland Irish juice known Kourennoff leaf leaves Leyel Lincolnshire man’s mandrake medicine milk mistletoe Moldenke mugwort Myddfai nettle nuts ointment onion parsley Pennsylvania Germans Physicians of Myddfai plant poisonous poultice powdered prescribed protection RB Browne recommended remedy rheumatism root rose rosemary round rowan rubbed Schauenberg Schauenberg & Paris Scotland Sebillot seeds Somerset sore southernwood sprig St John’s Súilleabháin superstition symbol taken thorns toothache treat tree Trevelyan unlucky VG Hatfield Vickery warts Welsh whooping cough Wiltshire wine witches wood wounds yarrow