• BASIL OCIMUM BASILICUM - plant generic

BASIL - meaning


(taken from the book of Alfredo Cattabiani "Florario - myths, legends and symbols of plants and flowers". It is a book to buy read consult ! )



You would not be able to find a better name at basil, in this grass of the gardens, elegant in its simplicity and the intense fragrance, but also healthy thanks to its properties antispasmodic, digestive, emmenagoghe and tonic.

Basil derives, via the Latin basilicum, from Greek basilikós, regal.

In botany is called Orimum basilicum, where the first term means "fragrance".


It is believed that the basil is free the air from the evil spirits so that you hold it often on windowsills or near the house.

The leaves put into the water purificherebbero the body and the mind from evil influences, you can hunt even scattering them dry on the floor.

His presence would also have another effect that is not dissimilar to the second code matches the traditional, for which a plant that drives away the demons, keep away snakes and scorpions, and even mosquitoes. It is argued that, next to the tomatoes, repel insects.

His presence in the kitchens and in the dining rooms preserverebbe from poisoning or disturbances caused by bad foods, altered, or "invoiced".

In India there is a basil sacred said tulasi, an herb that is consecrated and is identified with Lakshmi, wife of Vishnu, goddess of beauty, of peace and of harmony, in many aspects similar to our Aphrodite Urania.

He invokes the disciple to protect all parts of the body, but especially because it grants children to those who desire them.

...Vincenzo Maria di Santa Caterina, an Italian religious who lived in the XVII century, wrote about the typical custom of Malabar: "Almost all, especially the inhabitants of the North, they like a grass similar to our basilico gentile, who, however, has a more intense aroma. They call it a neck; each one builds in front of their house a small altar surrounded by a small wall, the top of a middle arm, in the midst of which raise pillars. Have a great care of the grass; in front of it and whisper several times a day their prayers, cast themselves often, singing, dancing and innaffiandola. On the banks of the rivers where they bathe, and at the entrance of temples if he sees a large amount: they believe that the gods love particularly the "grass" and that the god Ganavedi to dwell in it habitually. During the travel, not having this plan, the outline on the ground together with the root; that's how you explain the fact that on the beach of the sea, you often see these drawings on the sand".



Even in the West is attributed to basil an erotic symbolism which is reflected in the properties of encouraging the conception, so much so that once you gave fodder to the donkeys and horses before riding.

In Abruzzo, In Chieti, a young farmer went to visit his girlfriend, bringing to the ear a sprig, but it is not bestowed to the beloved because the gesture would have been interpreted as a sign of contempt.


The basil is not only beneficial to love: its blossoming branches placed in a vase in a room propizierebbero the friendship and the harmony of the family.

This function is also found in a custom sicilian, reported by Pitré: the so-called "godmother of basil", a form of comparatico among women and girls, which tightens exchanging pots of this plant in the day a canon of Saint John the Baptist.

It is, in short, a magic plant that can lose however its effects if it is touched or cut with iron, as reported by Pliny.

You must grasp for magical practices, with the left hand and the crescent moon.

A sprig can tell if a person is a hypocrite or a liar: just, it seems, put a twig on his body while he sleeps; if the suspicion is well founded, the leaves shrivel up in a very short time.


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