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Tree properties - Blackthorn

Botanical name: Prunus spinosa

Other names:

Name 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.

Folklore: 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.

Magickal uses: 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 great power.

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.



Page last updated: 22 September, 2011

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