Planetary Association: Mercury
Elemental Association: Earth
Folklore: Once shrouded in much mystery and lore, Mandrake, the most important magical plant of the Middle Ages, today has been all but forgotten. The preachers of the Age of Enlightenment have successfully dispelled all the myths and tales that have spun up around this plant through the Ages. Today it is not even used medicinally anymore. Yet back in the days of ancient Egypt it was well known and respected enough to get a mention in the famous Ebers Papyrus, an ancient document dating back to about 1700 BC, which lists about 700 medicinal plants. Back then it was thought to increase fertility and was valued as an aphrodisiac. Even the Bible attests to its powers - in the story of Rachael, Leah and Jacob, the originators of the twelve tribes of Israel (Genesis XXX, 14-16), Rachael trusted in the power of the Mandrake to rouse Jacob’s interest in her, hoping that the herb would make her fertile so she could bear him a child. However, despite the Mandrake, God thought otherwise… The other mention of it is in the Song of Songs, Salomon VII 11-13, where it is mentioned as an allusion to passionate love-making (how did this piece of poetry ever end up getting into the Bible, I wonder?).