Wise Woman Ezine with herbalist Susun Weed
January 2007
Volume 7 Number 1
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What's Inside Wise Woman Herbal Ezine this Month...


Anti-Cancer Lifestyle ...
Excerpt from "A City Herbal"
by Maida Silverman

Blackberry (Rubus species)
Excerpt from "A City Herbal"
by Maida Silverman

Excerpt 1.3 , continued from last month

BLACKBERRY (Rubus species)

From antiquity down to the present day, an astonishing amount of folklore and superstition have become associated with the Blackberry. Classical Greek writers, aware of the genuinely useful properties of the Blackberry, were convinced that the plant had the power to cure the bite of poisonous creatures. This belief persisted for centuries. the ART of Joanna BarnumIn addition, Blackberry was credited with having a special affinity for women. The origin of this belief is lost in time, but perhaps the fertile habit of the plant or its many-seed fruit was associated with the hoped-for fertility of women. In any event, Blackberry has for centuries been used to treat the disorders connected with menstruation, conception, and childbirth. Usually taken as a tea, the berries and leaves are still used by women in many parts of the United States and Europe.

The speed and efficiency with which the Blackberry bush can transform an area of open land into a virtually impenetrable forest of menacing thorns has made a tremendous impression, as testified to by the wealth of examples found in folklore: Sleeping Beauty protected by the bramble forest for one hundred years; Rapunzel whose lover falls into the bramble patch and is blinded by the thorns; and our own Br’er Rabbit are a few examples of many. The bramble is also said to be the Burning Bush from which God spoke to Moses, and from which the Crown of Thorns that tormented Jesus was fashioned.

The Anglo-Saxons believed Blackberry had the power to undo witchcraft. Christian faith and a pagan belief in the magical power of numbers (especially 3 and 9) are combined in the following charm “against any evil rune {witchcraft} and for one full of elvish tricks” (under enchantment): “Take Bramble Apple {Blackberries}, pound and sift them, put them in a pouch, lay them under the altar and sing nine masses over them. Then put this dust into milk, drip Holy Water three times upon it and drink every three hours.”

Another prescription, “a good salve against the temptations of the Fiend: and for a man full of elfin tricks,” required ten different herbs, bramble included. These were pounded together, boiled in butter, and the resulting broth was strained through a cloth and set under a church altar. Nine Masses were sung over it and then “the man was smeared on parts of his body.”

A peculiar contrast to the pleasure derived from eating the fresh, ripe Blackberries was the superstitious belief, in many areas in the British Isles and France, that Blackberries were unwholesome and even dangerous to eat. Thomas Green, a nineteenth-century British herbalist, mentions that “in some places Blackberries are called Scaldberries, from their supposed qualities of giving a disease called Scaldhead to children who eat them in immoderate quantities, as children will, when they can obtain them.”



Prepare syrup as for Blackberry syrup (preceding recipe), or if you wish a sweeter cordial, allow 1 cup of sugar to each cup of juice. You may spice the syrup with nutmeg, cinnamon, allspice, or cloves, the combination and amount to your own taste. (Crush whole spices yourself. Do not use store-bought powders.) Boil syrup gently for about 10 minutes, then strain out the spices. You may use ½ cup of vodka (or brandy if you prefer) for each cup of syrup, or equal amounts of spirits and syrup. Store in tightly covered bottles.

Excerpt from "A City Herbal"
by Maida Silverman

A City Herbal
by Maida Silverman. The wild plants of the city are potent herbal medicines and nutritious wild edibles, as well as sources of comfort, fiber, and dyes. Learn to recognize and use 34 of them. 192 pages, index, illustrations.
Read a review

Retails for $13.95

“A City Herbal by Maida Silverman is a delightful way to get acquainted with wild herbs that you have no doubt walked on or over without ever dreaming how useful they can be. It has increased my interest and curiosity a hundredfold and I’m sure it will do the same for you.”  -James Beard

Order A City Herbal in our Bookshop


Breast Cancer? Breast Health!
The Wise Woman Way

by Susun S. Weed
Foreword by Christiane Northrup, MD
380 pages, index, profusely illustrated.
Foods, exercises, and attitudes to keep your breasts healthy. Supportive complimentary medicines to ease side-effects of surgery, radiation, chemotherapy, or tamoxifen.
Retails for $21.95

Read a Review

Read some excerpts:
Mammograms - Who Needs Them? from Breast Cancer? Breast Health!
Using Herbs Safely from Breast Cancer? Breast Health!
My Anti-Cancer Lifestyle from Breast Cancer? Breast Health!


What a gift to women of all ages! This book helped me overcome my fear of what I might discover during self-examination. I am so grateful that this book came my way and I am healthier in mind, body, and spirit thanks to Ms. Weed's wise words! If I could, I would give a copy of this book to every woman in the world!


Dreaming In Color Luman Deck

The Dreaming in Color™ Luman Deck is a bridge that is specifically intended to help the user develop their intuitive and psychic abilities through the use of meditative, intuitive and psychological expansion and color-soaked dreamscape imagery.

60 vibrant 3" x 5" cards on a rich, lustrous satin matte stock, beautifully boxed (the box is a lush purple, of course). User guide included.

Price: $19.50

see the Dreaming in Color™ Luman Deck in our Bookshop


Wise Woman Herbal Ezine is sponsored by www.susunweed.com and www.wisewomanbookshop.com

Breast Cancer? Breast Health! the Wise Woman Way

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