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Mistletoe – 1933

Western People 18th March, 1933 p.5

Mistletoe Photo: David Monniaux Wikimedia Commons
Photo: David Monniaux
Wikimedia Commons

Since our great woods were destroyed,  mistletoe is not very common in this country.  In ancient times  mistletoe was one of the most famous of all plants. As it grows as a parasite on trees, and has no root in the ground, it was supposed to have come direct from the gods as the preternatural product of a sort of virgin birth. The Druids cut it with a golden sickle (for iron must not be used for the purpose) and they let it fall upon a sheet lest it should touch the common earth. The Druids sacrificed two white bulls in its honour. Pliny tells us that in Gaul they cut it on the sixth day of the moon, because then the moon was in its youthful strength and presumably this gave the plant more power or virtue. In north Italy they cut it on the first day of the moon for the same reason.