Other names: Sloe
origins: In ogham the
blackthorn is known as "straif" - the Gaelic word "straif" translates
as "strife". The words "slay" and "sloe" are also closely linked.
With its spiny branches, the
blackthorn has an ominous image. In the past the thorns are said to
have been used to prick wax images for cursing. On a more positive
side however it could sometimes be used as an instrument of blessing.
In ogham, the blackthorn is
regarded as an increaser of secrets and the "rune of the great wheel".
Its vicious black thorns make it impenetrable and it is a tree of
great density and strength. A wand or staff made from this wood has
The Blackthorn is important at the Spring Equinox when the beautiful
clouds of white blossom appear on its branches, secondly at the time
of Samhain when the berries are ripe and it can be used to summon the
Wild Hunt and, thirdly, at the Winter Solstice when the wood is used
as an offering to the Underworld powers for the return of the sun.
Twisted Blackthorn is a rare find making it all the more special.