Sunday, April 6, 2014

The Nine Sacred Herbs of Braucherei and Urglaawe

The Lacnunga describes the nine herbs sacred to the Anglo-Saxons, but what is not as well known is that the Deitsch have their own sacred nine, Neine Heiliche Gegreider.

Three come from wood (Dogwood, Elder, Wintergreen). Three come from the fields (Fimffingergraut or Cinquefoil, Catnip, Ground Ivy), and three from the garden (Horehound, Sage, and Thyme). In Urglaawe, these herbs are gathered after 15. Wonnet (May 15).

Those that come from wood can include many parts of the plant.


Dogwood (Deitsch: Hundsholz): Cornus florida

Elder (Deitsch: Hollerbeer): Sambucus nigra but also Sambucus canadensis

Wintergreen (Deitsch: Bruschttee): Gaultheria procumbens but also the distantly related Chimaphila umbellata (Pipsissewa; Deitsch: Gehlwassergraut)


Cinquefoil (Deitsch: Fimffingergraut): Potentilla reptans or Potentilla canadensis

Catnip: (Deitsch: Katzegraut): Nepeta cataria

Ground Ivy (Deitsch: Grundelreewe): Glechoma hederacea


Horehound (Deitsch: Edann): Marrubium vulgare; other species

Sage (Deitsch: Groddebalsem; Salwetee): Salvia officinalis and many other varieties

Thyme (Deitsch: Gwendel): Many varieties, but especially Thymus pulegioides ("Pennsylvania Dutch Tea"; Deitsch: Deitscher Tee)

The Fimffingergraut is already taking off rapidly in the garden, and the Ground Ivy and Catnip are beginning to raise their leaves above the ground. Some of my sage and thyme never went away.

One thing that is interesting to note is that Mugwort (Aldi Fraa; Artemisia vulgaris and other species) is mentioned in The Lacnunga but is omitted from the Deitsch sacred herbs list... yet in Braucherei and Urglaawe, Mugwort is probably the most commonly used sacred herb. It has a standing of its own. Holle is represented in the Nine Sacred Herbs by Elder.

Fimffingergraut was featured in an article here in April of 2013. The other herbs will be featured in upcoming Blanzeheilkunscht articles.

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