Wednesday, October 12, 2011
The Magic of Lavender
We have a decided penchant for lavender! Lavender takes its name from the Latin word lavo meaning "to wash." We named our first shop, "Twin Sisters Lavender and Lace," and still continue the love affair by tucking sprigs of lavender or sachets into each of our parcels that we mail. We also offer bunches of lavender for sale in our shop! In the Christian tradition, Mary hung Jesus' freshly washed clothes on the lavender bush and that is how the plant got its divine fragrance! How wonderful a scent must be that derived from infant Jesus' gown!
From the divine to the mundane, lavender was much used in the medieval toilette, for bathing, cleaning hands and washing and storing linens. From ancient times to present day, lavender is used as a moth repellent, tucked between linens and hung in between garments. In medieval times lavender was a welcome addition to home-keeping, strewn on floors to impart a delicious scent when trod on! (Remember baths were far from an everyday occurrence and deodorant's invention was a long way off!) Lavender also has its place in the kitchen and not just on the kitchen floor. It is used in salads, but more to our liking is delicious in shortbread and ice cream! As much as we love lavender to some it came to symbolize distrust. The origins of this belief trace to the passing on of the tale that the asp that killed Cleopatra hid under a lavender bush!
Lavender water was thought to cure headaches, preserve chastity and enable you to see ghosts! Seems like the perfect water to swig at your next Halloween party!!(although we would not suggest dressing like Cleopatra!)