|Magic Gardens: "Uath", letter "H": our Hawthorn|
|Monday, 01 June 2009 00:00|
Isabel del Río
“UATH”, letter “H”: OUR HAWTHORN
Our gardens are full of marvelous trees which have been venerated during centuries.
In Yareah magazine/January, we started to know and see their poetic secrets by analyzing Robert Graves’ famous essay “The White Goddess - a Historical Grammar of Poetic Myth” and what he calls “The alphabet of trees” in Celtic Druidic culture (letters were known by the name of a tree which started with its same initial. For example, “duir” -our oak- was also the letter “D” and “saille” –our willow- was the letter “S”). We explained that this alphabet had five vowels and thirteen consonants and the reasons why these last ones formed a magic seasonal calendar based on trees and “Mother Nature” which was secretly used by Druids for centuries, even after Christian irruption... they had to hide their magic words and spells of their enemies to prevent their possible attacks, a belief shared by old Greek and Roman religions.
The sixth tree is the hawthorn or “May tree” as it takes its name from this month. It is an unlucky tree. In old Irish legends, it is called sceith it means damage) and in Britain and Greece, people wore old clothes and did not make sex until the 15th of June when the bad days had finished (similar costumes happened in Spain and other Mediterranean countries).
In Rome, temples and images were cleaning during this month: they were preparing the great celebrations of Summer and people avoided to marry in May since Cardea (another name for Mother Nature or White Goddess) did not like marriages: she liked free women as her… as Her in the previous times to masculine Gods, as Zeus, began to dominate the Heavens.
Plutarch told us how some puppets called argeioi (white men) where threw into the river to make the Goddess happy and Ovid affirmed, once again, that the hawthorn is the tree of the forced chastity.
This sixth holly tree dominated from the 13th of May to the 9th of June and as Vaughan Cornish wrote on his book “Historic Thorn Trees in the British Isles”, it was a sad month until the 2nd century, when Romans consecrated it to Flora forgetting the old witch Cardea who made terrible curses with the branches of the hawthorn.
Isabel del Río was born in Madrid (Spain). She has studied in the University of Valladolid and she has a degree in Geography and History. She likes Arts and she has been painting for years. Now, she is teaching in a secondary school in Madrid and investigating about old lost female painters. She has published a novel called “Ariza” (Grupo Editorial Alcalá ISBN 978-84-96806-52-8).
|Last Updated ( Monday, 25 May 2009 19:31 )|