This is part of the A-to-Z blog challenge for April. My theme is legends and legendary creatures (both real and fiction). I hope you enjoy following along!
Wolfsbane, What It Is
If you’ve ever watched any sort of horror movie or TV show, then no doubt you’ve heard Wolfsbane mentioned. Said to be a dangerous substance for vampires, were-wolves, and other such nightly creatures. But why? Is it a real thing? Well here’s the plant itself:
Wolfsbane is described as an herbaceous perennial plant with purplish-blue flowers growing up to a meter tall. Its leaves and roots are extremely toxic and were used by the ancients as a poison. The Greek’s called it akoniton (without dirt) because it grows on rocky ground, and lykoktonon (wolf-slaying) because it was traditionally applied to their arrows when hunting wolves.
Okay, so clearly Wolfsbane is a real plant, and a deadly poisonous one at that! It was used to hunt wolves, so using it against were-wolves isn’t too far-fetched of an idea. And if it works on were-wolves, why not vampires and other monsters?
Here is the myth behind how Wolfsbane came to be:
From the Greek tales, Herakles was sent to fetch Cerberus (the 3-headed dog) from the underworld, as one of his twelve labors. The spittle of the beast dripped on the earth as Herakles fetched him though, and from that poisonous spittle sprang the first Wolfsbane plant.
So, the Greeks are the ones responsible for the myth surrounding Wolfsbane! They told some great stories, didn’t they? 😉
Before this, did you know Wolfsbane was a real plant? And how it was connected to wolves?
Join us tomorrow in another mysterious legend! Don’t forget to click the “Follow” button to be notified of new blog posts!
(Info credit from: theoi.com
Art/gifs belongs to their respective owners, not me. I make no profit through this.)