Herb of the Week ~ Meadowsweet

meadowsweetMeadowsweet ~ Spiraea ulmaris

Folk Names: Bride of the meadow, Bridewort, Dollor, Little Queen, Steeplebush, Trumpet weed

Planet: Jupiter
Element: Air
Deities: Anu, Virgin Mary, Brighid, Bloddeuwedd

All parts of Meadowsweet are used in herbal medicine. The plant contains salicylic acid (from which aspirin is derived), therefore it is useful as an analgesic and anti-inflammatory. It is also astringent, diaphoretic, diuretic, anti-rheumatic and hepatic. Meadowsweet has many medicinal uses – for relieving indigestion, treating gastric ulcer, cystitis, rheumatism, liver congestion and oedema. It is also used successfully to treat fevers and respiratory problems, especially wheezing and shortness of breath.

According to tradition Meadowsweet is one of the druid’s most sacred herbs along with water mint and vervain. Its magickal powers are love, divination, peace and happiness. Meadowsweet was also one of the plants used in the creation of Bloddeuwedd ‘Flower Face’, wife of the god Llew. It is traditional to include Meadowsweet in bridal bouquets as it brings extra joy and blessings to the new bride. Anointing oneself and breathing in Meadowsweet oil on Beltane eve is said to help one meet true love. It is used in love spells and can be strewn about the home, or used in sachets, to promote peace.

References:
Bartram’s Encyclopedia of Herbal Medicine
A compendium of Herbal Magick – Paul Beyerl
A Druid’s Herbal – Ellen Evert Hopman
Cunningham’s Encyclopedia of Magical Herbs

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