Which flower do you think of when you think of love? Most people say roses, but if you were a medieval German, you would probably have said linden. Germanic mythology held that the linden tree, its leaves and flowers were symbols of love. In fact, during the Middle Ages, the tree was actually known as the tree of love. Countless poems and sonnets were written, invoking linden's endorsement of all things amorous. One of the most famous was written by Walther von der Vogelweide (1170-1230). He writes:
Under der linden, an der heide, dâ unser zweier bette was,
dâ mugt ir vindenschône beide gebrochen bluomen unde gras.
For those of you who don't speak German, that's:
Under the lime tree, on the open field, where we two had our bed,
you still can see lovely both broken flowers and grass.
Hot stuff! (For the 12th century.) In addition to feeding the flames of passion, Linden was believed to calm the mind and prepare the body for sleep.
Modern herbalists consider Linden to be an antispasmodic, a sedative remedy that can relieve tension and sinus pressure. The plant contains tannins, volatile oils and flavanoids that help improve circulation. It also has a mildly tranquilizing effect and During WWII became popular with soldiers as a tea. In many parts of Europe, particularly Eastern, Linden tea is still regularly served after meals. There are so many reasons to fall in love with linden. Which one will you choose?
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