The history and the meaning of the herbs and/or flowers fascinates me. This page will review the history of herbs, historic usages of the herbs and the meaning that the herbs have, Victorian, through the centuries and ancient meanings. If you want to learn more,
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Herbal Sentiment: Energy in adversity, comfort, and patience.
Chamomile derived its name from Greek, meaning "ground apple" because of its apple-like fragrance.
The earliest known usage of chamomile is during Egyptian times. The Egyptian dedicated it to the sun god, Ra because if cured agues and malarial chills that plagued the ancient civilization. Diocorides and Pliny recommended baths or poultices of chamomile to relieve headaches and disorders of the kidneys, liver and bladder.
By 1651 when Culpeper’s "Complete Herbal" was published, chamomile was so familiar that he stated, "It is so well known every where, that it is but lost time and labour to describe it: the virtues thereof are as
followeth." The virtues that Culpeper stated were:
"A decoction made of camomile taketh away all pains and stitches in the side...the bathing with a decoction of camomile taketh away weariness..."
The Anglo-Saxons described chamomile as one of the nine sacred herbs given to heal the world by the god Woden. Throughout history, chamomile has been a popular remedy for many ailments from common cold and flu to digestive disorders, diarrhea, menstrual cramps, nervousness and insomnia.
Herbal Sentiment: Remembrance, Devotion, and fidelity.
Rosemary is an adaptation of Latin Ros marinus which translates to "dew of the sea",
so named because it favors coastal habitats. Rosemary is native to
the western Mediterranean region. Its fragrance can be sensed as far as20 miles
out to sea.
The history of the plant is recorded as far back as ancient Greece. In ancient Greece, rosemary had a reputation of improving the mind and memory, leading Greek students to wear garlands around their heads while taking exams or studying their lessons. Most likely from Greek studying habits, rosemary came to signify remembrance. At funerals, mourners carried fresh sprigs to toss onto the grave to signify that the deceased would not be forgotten.
Later rosemary became a symbol of fidelity, finding a place in ceremonies of not just burial but also weddings. Sprays were traditionally included in the bride’s bouquet.
The Queen of Hungary bathed daily in an essence of rosemary and was so known for her beauty at 72 that the enchanted King of Poland begged for her hand. As it has become known, "Hungary Water" is the oldest-known perfume and it is still made today.
Rosemary has had a long history of medicinal uses. In rosemary lore, it was known to cure nervous headaches, trembling, dizziness and stomach disorders. Besides improving the memory, disinfecting the air and repelling moths, rosemary is good as a hair conditioner. It is also reported to be diuretic, diaphoretic,
stimulative, astringent, stomachic, carminative, cholagogic, emmenagogic and antispasmodic. The list is endless.
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