Monday, August 15, 2016

Magical Love Herbs of Old Time Hoodoo

Some herbs and flowers used in love magic can be determined by their folk names. A partial list is as follows:

Heart’s-Ease (Viola tricolor)
Kiss-Me-Quick (Saxifraga umbrosa)
Forget-Me-Not (Ajuga chamaepitys)
True Forget-Me-Not (Myosotis scorpioides)
Love-In-A-Mist (Nigella damascena)
Love-Bind (Clematis vitalba)
Love-Apples (Lycopersicum esculentum)
Love-Ache (Levisticum officinale OR Ligusticum scoticum)
Love-Me (Myosotis palustris)
Lover’s-Links (Umbilicus rupestris)
Lover’s-Pride (Persicaria maculosa)
Lover’s-Steps (Lolium temulentum)
True-Love (Paris quadrifolia)
Lad-Love-Lass (Artemisia abrotanum)

Methods for employing these herbs might typically consist of including sprigs worked into bouquets which were presented to a lover, or mailing the flowers or leaves along with love letters. Many were also taken medicinally as aphrodisiacs. Those familiar with modern conjure formulas may also recognize a few of the names; one can presume that the plants originally were included in their namesake mixtures, or that the concoctions were at least intended to mimic their perfumes. For example, Cristiani’s 1877 book of perfume recipes included the following one for Kiss-Me-Quick:

1 pint extract of jasmine, no. 1 (alcohol scented from first rinsing of jasmine pomade)
½ pint extract of violet, no. 2 (alcohol scented from second rinsing of violet pomade)
½ pint extract of rose, no. 2 (from rose pomade, as above)
¼ pint tincture of vanilla
¼ pint tincture of vetivert
½ pint tincture of orris
¼ pint tincture of musk
1 ounce oil of bergamot
1 dram oil of rose
1 dram oil of cloves

8 ounces rosewater, double

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