Some of you may remember the vervain post I did last year after seeing it in The Vampire Diaries, well, it turns out that there is much more to this herb than I thought. Yes, it has ties to vampire in folklore, but that’s not all. Check out all of the other superstitions surrounding vervain.
Vervain is credited with all sorts of magical properties, most of which were recognized back in Roman times. They called it sacra herba and used it in various religious rites, they also used it to ward off evil and promote fertility. But the Romans weren’t the only ones to use this herb, the ancient Persians and Druids did as well, they also used it for its magical properties.
Vervain continues to be used by herbalists and witches today, it is sometimes called the “enchanters plant.” Other than warding off evil, vervain was used in various love charms, to open locks by magic and as an aphrodisiac. Keeping this herb in the house was believed to bring all the occupants prosperity. Children that carried a little vervain in their bag were said to grow up both intelligent and friendly. That’s not all though, people also believed that enemies who share an infusion of vervain will instantly forget their quarrels and reconcile.
The plant must be gathered with great care though, since it was thought that its magical properties were lost unless it was picked during certain phases of the moon and with the chanting of special charms.
Vervain also has a handful of uses in folk medicine. These include treating cancer, snake bites, scrofula, epilepsy, the plague and more. For cancer, the old procedure was to split a root of vervain in two, suspend one half around the patient’s neck and the other half over a fire, and the result was that the tumor would shrink away. It was also believed that an evil person could make the tumor return by soaking the smoked root in some water. Insane.
So what have we learned? That this one little herb has all sorts of magical properties that extend far past what the Vampire Diaries shows us. Awesome!
More on vervain can be found in my original post on the herb HERE.