Rosemary - Rosemarinus officinalis
Other Names: Incensier, Dew of the Sea, Rose of the Sea, Sea Mist, Sea Dew, Ros Maris, Rosmarie, Guardrobe. Mary's Mantle, Polar Plant, Compass Plant, Romarin, Romero, Rosemarino.
Planetary Ruler: The Sun
Powers: Protection, Love, Lust, Mental powers, Exorcism, Purification, Healing, Sleep, Youth.
Rosemary is one of my favourite herbs, it is a hardy, evergreen perennial that grows between 3-6 ft. It is native to the Mediterranean and was said to have been brought to Britain by the Roman's. It is now grown throughout the world, and is a popular ornamental, culinary and magical plant. Rosmarinus is from the Latin meaning 'Dew of the Sea'.
Rosemary has a reputation of improving concentration and memory, Greek students would braid it into their hair to help them with their exams. It has long been associated with remembrance and is often used in funeral wreaths or placed in coffins to signify that the dead will not be forgotten.
Rosemary can be hung up around the home for protection against thieves, evil spirits and negative energies, which makes it a great addition to any protection bags/pouches or bottles. It can also be placed beneath your pillow to keep away nightmares and to remember your dreams.
Powdered rosemary kept under the bed is said to keep a couple together, and hung-over cradles, it will deter faeries from stealing babies, although it is also said to attract faeries and elves!
Rosemary can be used in spells for fidelity, memory and to dispel jealousy. It is perfect for purifying ritual baths, and used an incense during past life meditations.
A sprig of Rosemary, wrapped in cotton and tied around your right arm is said to dispel depression and keep you merry and bright; and in the middle ages it was worn around the neck to protect against the plague. Along with Rue, it was placed in Courts of Justice as a preventative from the contagion of gaol fever.
Rosemary infusion makes an ideal purifying wash for your hands before any healing work. In France it was burnt along with juniper berries in sick rooms and hospitals to purify the air.
Rosemary makes an excellent hair rinse (see recipe below) it adds strength and shine to your hair and stimulates growth. The essential oil, (diluted in a carrier oil) can be massaged into the scalp to prevent baldness and as it increases circulation it makes a soothing and warming massage oil for sore muscles, backache and arthritis. The infusion can be used as an antiseptic and astringent toner for your skin, and can be drank to relieve headaches, indigestion, menstrual cramps and nervous disorders.
ROSEMARY LEAF SHOULD NOT BE TAKEN INTERNALLY IN LARGE AMOUNTS (ESPECIALLY BY PREGNANT WOMEN). ROSEMARY ESSENTIAL OIL SHOULD NOT BE USED INTERNALLY AT ALL.
Rosemary is said to only flourish in gardens where the woman rules the home. It repels insects from neighbouring plants, and makes a good insect repellent when applied to the skin. The leaves and flowers can be used to create a yellow-green dye.
Rosemary is sacred to Hebe, Aphrodite and the Virgin Mary.
There is a Christian tale that says the flowers were originally white, and turned blue when Mary spread her blue cloak over a rosemary bush to dry.
As a culinary herb, rosemary is used as a flavouring for game and poultry, oils and wine.
Herbal vinegar hair rinse
Apple Cider Vinegar cuts through the residue left by styling products and shampoo. Lavender, rosemary and chamomile are beneficial for all hair types.
1 tbsp. dried lavender
1 tbsp. dried rosemary
1 tbsp. dried chamomile
250 mls (8fl oz.) apple cider vinegar
Steep dried herbs inn apple cider vinegar in a covered glass jar for 2 weeks. Strain and pour into a glass bottle. Add 1 tbsp. to 250ml (8fl oz.) warm water and pour through hair for a final rinse after shampoo and conditioner.
2 parts frankincense
Holistic Herbal - David Hoffman
Herbcraft: A Guide to the Shamanic and Ritual use of Herbs - Anna Franklin and Susan Lavender
Cunningham's Encyclopaedia or Magical Herbs - Scott Cunningham
A Kitchen Witch's world of magical herbs and plants - RachelPatterson
Jekka's complete herb book - Jekka McVicar