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Peredur, handsome son of Efrauc
Flower of warriors and candle of knights...
came towards a river valley
And the edges of the valley were wooded
and the ground around the valley was level meadow.
...On the bank of the river he saw a tall tree
one half of which was in flames
from the roots along its length to the tip
and the other half was green and leafy.
Text adapted from The Mabinogion, assembled from the White Book of Rydderch, circa 1000-1250 AD (Based on translations by Geoffrey Gantz and Lady Charlotte Guest)
|GORST (Gorse, 2009)|
Rain outside it wets the fern,
white sea shingle, foamy shore...
Rain outside the shelter near,
yellow gorse, withered cowparsnip...
Rain outside it wets the deep
wind whistling over the reedtops...
Text adapted from The Red Book of Hergest, Welsh, early 12th century (Translation adapted from Early Nature poetry, Kenneth Jackson CUP, 1935)
|BOC-TREOW (Beech, 2009)|
Those are the beech runes...
On a shield they should be cut,
On Sleipnir's teeth, on the Norn's nail, on the night-owl's beak...
All were shaved off and sent on wide ways.
They are among the Aesir, they are among the elves,
Some went to the wise Vanir, some with humankind
Text adapted from The poetic Edda (Translation C. Larrington 1996, OUP and The Titus Project, University of Frankfurt) assembled in the Codex Regius circa 1270.
|ALAER (Alder, 2006)|
It delighteth to grow
in moist woods
and watery places.
Over those trees
the ravens wander
dark and dusky gleaming.
Text from Culpeper's The Complete Physician or Herball, 1653, and
adapted from the fight at Finnsburh (fragment), English 11th Century.
HAESL (Hazel, 2007)|
The Naming of the Shannon and the Nine Hazels of Wisdom
Sinend daughter of Lodan Lucharglan went to Connla's Well which is under the seawave to behold it. That is a well at which are the hazels of wisdom and in the same hour their fruit, and their blossom and their foliage break forth and these fall on the well in the same shower. Then the salmon chew the fruit and the juice of the nuts is apparent on their purple bellies. And seven streams of wisdom break forth...
Text adapted from the Rennes Dindsenchas, Irish 12th-15th Century.
|HAGETHORN (Hawthorn, 2007)|
...Then Merlin began to devise the craft unto Nimiane
Till it fill on a day that they went through the forest of Brocelonde
And found a bush that was fair and high of white hawthorn full of flowers
And when she felt that he was asleep
She began her enchantment...
Text from Merlin or the Early History of King Arthur,
French, about 1450-1460 (Ed. Henry B. Wheatley, 1875).
|HOLEN (Holly, 2007)|
...There haled in at the hall door and awful figure
Set in his semblance seen.
He caused fear to make a bold man wither
And was overall a glorious green.
Whether had he no helmet, nor a spear to smite,
But in his hand he had a holly bobbe,
That is most green when groves are bare...
Text from Sir Gawain and the Green Knight (Anon),
English, 14th Century (Eds. J.R.R. Tolkien and E.V. Gordon, 1925)
|IFIG (Ivy, 2006)|
The greater ivy
climbeth on trees and walls;
the stalkes thereof
are woody, and
now and then so great
as it seems to become
Text from Gerard's Herball, 1599