Witchcraft Flower - Mandrake
Mandrake (Mandragora) Is a genus of perennial herbs of the Solanaceae family. The plants are mostly stemless, the leaves are very large and collected in a rosette, the diameter of which reaches 1-2 meters or more, with fleshy roots rich in starch.
In the Middle Ages in Europe, mandrake was used both for medical and, even more, for magical purposes. The terrible beliefs about the mandrake were supported by the dark magic of the Middle Ages. Since ancient times, great interest has been aroused in this magical plant. What is the secret of this mysterious flower?
Mandrake has a white branched root, sometimes resembling a human figure. It is not surprising that she attracted people engaged in magic. Sorcerers used it in various magic rituals. He was nicknamed - witch flower. It was believed that it has wonderful properties. They depicted a mandrake in the form of a little man with a bunch of leaves on his head, which resembled the image of a witch. Due to this similarity, many superstitions and legends have appeared.
A love potion for men
Once mandrake was considered a universal, healing remedy. They believed that the drug prepared from it could heal ailments, but it was also possible to cause harm with its help. Sorcerers used this flower to induce damage. They chose a damaged mandrake, and it was believed that the victim would hurt exactly the place that was damaged on the mandrake. Love potions were also prepared from it.
In ancient Greek tradition, it was mentioned that the sorceress Circe prepared a tincture from this plant in order to attract men. And the girls and boys of Greece used a piece of the magic flower as an amulet of love, and wore it around the neck.
In Europe, the mandrake was considered alive, it was even divided into male and female. Those who were superstitious said that the spine protects the owner from ill-wishers, answers any questions, makes his master clairvoyant, helps to find treasures. If you leave a hill of gold coins next to a wonderful plant before morning, then it will double.
The test is not for the weak
It was not easy to get a mandrake. In the Middle Ages it was said that when they dug a spine from the ground, he screamed in terror with such a piercing cry that a person could go crazy and even die. Therefore, there was a whole rite for digging, according to which the brave man put his ears in wax, then carefully loosened the earth around the plant, tied the root with one end of the rope, and tied the other to the neck of the black dog. The dog was supposed to pull out a flower.
The scientist and philosopher of that time, Theophrastus came up with another way in which the daredevil had to dig a flower with a sword, then draw 3 circles around him and turn to face the west, while his assistant had to dance around the mandrake, whispering a love speech.
It was believed that keeping the magic root was a very troublesome affair. He was taken care of as a person, bathed, dressed, and wrapped in silk fabric for the night, and on Fridays it was necessary to wash the plant with wine. The owner of the wonderful root hid it from prying eyes, because he could be convicted of witchcraft.
Truth or fiction?
A witchcraft plant actually exists and belongs to poisonous, perennial herbs. She (mandrake) is a relative of bleached and belladonna. It has the properties of both sleeping pills and stimulating effects. Due to the content of atropine, it can cause hallucinations.
The use of mandrake is categorically not recommended, since severe side effects are possible, even fatal.
Thus, this is not a mythical plant, but rare in our time. The magic root is found in the Mediterranean. Perhaps before the mandrake was found in other places, but, apparently, in the Middle Ages it was too much in demand among witches and wizards.