Common Name: Mistletoe
Latin name: Viscum album
Origin: Eastern Europe
Mistletoe is an evergreen parasitic vine that grows attached to and within the branches of a host tree. There are several species, with the European species held in highest regard by herbalists.
The ancient Druids believed mistletoe to be an indicator of great sacredness. The winter solstice, called ‘Alban Arthan’ by the Druids, was according to Bardic Tradition, the time when the Chief Druid would cut the sacred mistletoe from the Oak. The mistletoe is cut using a golden sickle on the sixth night of the new moon after the winter solstice. A cloth held below the tree by other members of the order to catch the sprigs of mistletoe as they fell, as it was believed that it would have profaned the mistletoe to fall upon the ground. He would then divide the branches into many sprigs and distributed them to the people, who hung them over doorways as protection against thunder, lightning and other evils.
Warning numbers: 3, 4, 17, 28, 34, 40
The Druids are thought to have believed that the berries of the mistletoe represented the sperm of the Gods. When pressed, a semen like substance issues from the white berries. Mistletoe was considered a magickal aphrodisiac. Girls standing under a sprig of mistletoe were asking for a bit more than a kiss, it seems.
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Please note, these are weighed by humans, so a slight variance in weight may occur from time to time.