Charms, Cures, Herbal Remedies From Ancestors of Granny Women

Irish woman at her spinning wheel, c. 1900
Irish woman at her spinning wheel, c. 1900 | Source

Irish Ancestors

Charms, cures, herbal healing practices and beliefs from ancestors of a Granny Woman goes far back in time.

The healers of Appalachia know their knowledge and wisdom has been passed down for generations in their family. Where and when did this wisdom and art of healing begin? It goes far back to ancient times, to peasants throuhout Ireland, and many other parts of the world. In this article we will focus mainly on Ireland. The methods of healing that Granny Women practice are thousands of years old. The use of herbs is the oldest form of healing. Herbs, roots, bark and other plant parts were (and still are) used for healing purposes.

Step Through a Doorway to the Ancient Past

Ancient door in Ireland.
Ancient door in Ireland. | Source

Irish Doctors of Ancient Times

Irish doctors, from ancient pagan times, were well-known to be highly skilled in the treatment of diseases. Since those earliest of days the Irish, peasants as well as the adept, have had great knowledge of the power of herbs.

Their professors of medicine were so skilled they held high, influential positions in the Druid order. Always followed around by a large group of pupils, the master taught how to diagnose and treat disease then prepare the necessary curative potions. These physicians had skills that were mainly based upon their profound knowledge of the healing nature and properties of herbs.

The physicians also practiced magic with great results. They instinctively knew how strong the charms, incantations, and fairy cures effected the nerves and mind of a patient. Their methods were thus of a medico-religious character which along with ceremonial ritual helped the curative process immensely.

Through the centuries these medico-religious and magico-religious methods have come down to the Granny Women healers of Appalachia. In ancient times people lived in villages with kinfolk, or clans. Essential to survival was good health. They had to depend on the land to give them what they needed. Illness, injuries and diseases were treated with methods that stemmed from instincts, observance of nature, and traditional beliefs.

Druid of High Position

1815 illustration of an Arch Druid in His Judicial Habit
1815 illustration of an Arch Druid in His Judicial Habit | Source

Learning From Nature

Since those early times people have learned in the same traditional and instinctive ways. The secrets and wisdom of a Granny Woman was passed down orally to her granddaughter who was taught to be aware of what messages nature sends.

When one saw an animal with an injury rub the wound against moss growing on trees in the forests, instinct told the observer that some healing properties were in the moss. Thus moss became a source for healing - it has antiseptic properties. Moss was used for bandages on wounds. Eventually moss was found to be beneficial in the diet of folks, it was also used for preserving foods.

Granny Women knew that crushed garlic rubbed on a strip of moss and placed on a wound was a protective as well as a healing bandage. It worked in ancient times, it works now in the same way. Garlic is one of nature's super food and healing products. Crushed garlic is very beneficial for fungus issues, it is a natural anti-fungal source.

Willow bark has been used for healing since ancient times. Willow bark is a natural immune boosting source. Its healing properties are also a health benefit as an analgesic, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, fever reducer, and anti-oxidant. Now, it is obvious the ancient ones did not have these names of the beneficial properties, but they did see sick or hurt animals eating the bark and watched the animal for days to see what the results were.

Herbs we use today just for flavoring foods were first found in nature by our ancestors and used for healing. Many healing methods the ancient folks learned are still helpful and in use today.

Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.

— Albert Einstein

Forest Moss

Moss on trees, forest in Ireland.
Moss on trees, forest in Ireland. | Source

Ancient Beliefs and Cures

Clay was used for treatment of diseases. It has been known for ages that Earth is the source of life. Using clay from special places named after Saints was thought to have great healing power. Clay is known to draw poisons out of the skin, such as poisons from insect bites and poisonous plants. Still today, clay is used for deep cleansing and detoxifying the skin. Clay has been used for healing since prehistoric times.

Potatoes have been used since early times to take the redness and pain out of minor burns. A slice of raw potato was immediately placed on a burn. Honey was also a quick first aid for burns, either spread directly on the burn or on a linen bandage and applied. The bandage was changed every few hours.

It was believed that eating carrots, when boiled down soft enough to mash, would purify the blood. Today we know carrots are rich in vitamin A and beta-carotene, an antioxidant. Studies in the medical field have shown that carrot juice extract kills leukemia cells, which is cancer of the blood.

Mint has always been helpful for upset stomachs. The ancients believed that mint tied to the wrist would ward off stomach disease and infection.

The bed of a sick person should be aligned north to south.

Why do you think a sick person's bed should be aligned north to south?

  • It is colder in the north, so that will help bring a fever down if the head is in the north.
  • Having the feet in the south keeps them warm.
  • North to south just seems more harmonious.
  • Other. (Please explain in the comment section.)
See results without voting

Ancient Druid Charms and Cures

When Christianity became more prominent the Irish embraced it - however, they still retained their unshakable faith in the Druid charms. They are still used today by descendants of village peasants. These charms are considered to be talismans of magic power when said over an ill person.

Argue if you must, but the Irish who believe in them will not let it shake their faith in the mystic formulas. To laugh at them would surely cause an evil fate to fall upon the doubter.

Charms must be said with fervent faith or the mystic words will not work. The charms have the best effect when said on Wednesdays and Fridays while fasting and before sunrise.

  • Charm for Falling Sickness: By the wood of the Cross, by the Man that overcame death, be thou healed." The words are to be said in the left ear while the fit is on the patient, and he is to be signed three times with the sign of the Cross, in the name of God and the blessed Lord, when by virtue of the charm he will be cured.
  • Charm for a Sprain: As St Agnes went over the moor to the mountain of Moses, she fell with her foot turned. But sinew to sinew, and bone to bone, God makes all right to him who has faith; and be thou healed, in Jesus name. Amen
  • Charm for a wound that Bleeds: "A child was baptized in the river Jordan; and the water was dark and muddy, but the child was pure and beautiful." Say these words over the wound, placing the finger on the spot where the blood flows, adding: "In the name of God and of the Lord Christ, let the blood be stanched." And if the patient have faith, so it will be.
  • Cure for Weakness: Drink water from a river that forms a boundary of three properties for nine Sunday morning, before sunrise, fasting, and before anyone has crossed the stream. This must be done in silence, without speaking to anyone. After this has been done repeat nine Aves and the Credo.
  • Cure for Cramp and Deafness: An eel's skin tied round the knee alleviates pain, and for deafness nothing is esteemed better than constant anointing with the oil of eels, used perfectly fresh.
  • Cure for Inflammation: Nine handfuls of mountain moss, dried on a pan to powder. Nine pinches of it, and nine pinches of ashes from the hearth, to be mixed in whey and taken every Tuesday and Thursday.

Myths, Superstitions and Legends

The myths, superstitions and legends of a people are expressions of their faith. Their mythology and superstitions define their origins and natural relationships to all things.

Ancient beliefs have been handed down through generations and are so interwoven in the daily life of the people they remain fixed as part of their character. This is especially true of the people of Ireland.

Since very early times there was, and still is, an intuitive belief in mystic beings. These unseen beings influenced every action of life and the forces of nature. Early races felt that everything had a spirit. It was felt in the winds, the trees that swayed in the breeze and in all primal elements of existence. Fire was a sacred symbol of divine essence, ever reaching upwards. Water was a symbol of purification and always finding new paths and levels. The power of Earth was revered, for it produces all things that live, gives burial to that which dies, and gives life again.

Ancient Irish peasantry were not committed to book learning. Their beliefs and faith were bound to the spiritual realms, the world of the Sidhe (fairies), and the mysteries of nature. The unseen world of mystery was of vital importance which became a vivid reality to primitive races - more than any other culture in Europe, it is the Irish who held on to these beliefs. For the Irish to violate a superstition or discard ancient traditions of their ancestors is almost unheard of. The Irish have an intense faith and a strong instinct for the mystic and supernatural.

If a house is to be built over a fairy trail, or a road is to cross over an ancient meeting place of the fairy clans, the outrage of the people will put a stop to the plans and diversion has to be made so as not to cause harm and curses from the Sidhe. There have been cases where a house was unknowingly built over a path the fairies used every night. In that case the front door must open to a straight through path to the back door, no obstructions, and the doors have to be left open so the wee folk can pass through freely.

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Comments 84 comments

Jackie Lynnley profile image

Jackie Lynnley 9 months ago from The Beautiful South

Great article, so much information and so very interesting. What people did to promote health and healing! This makes me think of the Clan of the Cave Bear series. Did you read any of those? So long ago but really great!

I like to think God inspired more than we know about whether it was brought through a spirit or whatever. May it always be through His spirit who gave us everything.

Hope you are doing well! Hugs and best wishes.

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cygnetbrown profile image

cygnetbrown 9 months ago from Alton, Missouri

I think it is so interesting that so many ancient culture traditions have been embraced by Christendom.


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 9 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Hi Jackie. I did read the Clan of the Cave Bear series and really enjoyed them.

I have always been fascinated with the history of Ireland and their beliefs. Thank you for stopping by to read and comment. I am doing well and hope you are, too. Take care and many hugs!


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 9 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Hi cygnetbrown - nice to hear from you. The Irish accepted Christianity and blended in with it quite well along with their own traditions. Thanks for the visit and comment.


Faith Reaper profile image

Faith Reaper 9 months ago from southern USA

Cool article, Phyllis!

We can certainly learn a lot from the ancient ways of healing naturally. I know we have come a long way, but just the basic knowledge is so valuable. I have some Irish in me from somewhere down the family line.

Fascinating read!


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 9 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Hi Faith. So glad you like the article. Sometimes the old ways are better than we realize. I like to read and write about the Irish. I have ancestors there on my paternal grandfather's side. Thanks, Faith, for stopping by. I appreciate your visits always.


Faith Reaper profile image

Faith Reaper 9 months ago from southern USA

I'll have to remember the honey and/or potato slice on minor burns. On time one of granddaughters came up behind me after I had just opened the oven door and she touch the tip of her finger on the inside of the door. Oh, it scared me to death and all I remembered to do was run cool tap water over it for ten minutes, and I prayed. There wasn't even a mark or red spot ...well, there was a big one, but then it just vanished! I was so relieved as I know whenever I get a small burn like that it tends to keep burning through the layers and she was not in any pain or anything.


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 9 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Hi Faith. I usually go for the cold water because it is the easiest and fastest. I run the cool water over the closest pulse so it cools the blood that i rushing to the burn. I let the water run down over the burn also. I do that for at least five minutes and repeat if necessary. It really works. Good thing you were right there and used cold water.


Faith Reaper profile image

Faith Reaper 9 months ago from southern USA

Yes, that's what I've always heard to do was run the cool tap water over it but I didn't know about the pulse. That makes a lot of sense. Thank you for the added tip! Hey, you should open up a "Granny Woman" shop where you have all this readily available to buy, or are there shops like that somewhere already?


Jodah profile image

Jodah 9 months ago from Queensland Australia

Good to see another informative and interesting article by you Phyllis. It was interesting to read of the various cures and remedies. I too have read the Clan of the Cave Bear series. That first pic of the woman with the 1900 Irish Spinning wheel caught my attention. My wife recently sold a spinning wheel which was almost identical to that. It was called a "Sleeping Beauty."


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 9 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

I would love to have my own little shop, Faith, to sell books on herbs and Granny Women. I can't think of any shop like one I would have. Maybe some day I will do that.


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 9 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Hi Jodah. Ever since you wrote about your wife's spinning wheels I have been fascinated with pictures of them. That pic of the Irish woman is one of my favorite images. I always wanted a spinning wheel - maybe I will have one in the shop Faith mentioned and learn how to spin. Clan of the Cave Bear series was so good. Thanks for reading and commenting, Jodah, I really appreciate it.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 9 months ago from Southern Illinois

This was really interesting to me. My ancestry includes Irish along with German, Dutch and Indian. I learned so much from this article. I've never heard of tree or ground moss being a healing factor. I knew there had to be a reason why I love the taste of garlic so much too. It is amazing how the ancient people knew how to use the earth's bounty for healing. I remember my mother using a potato on a boil to draw the core to the service for removable. Thanks for sharing this. Do you know any remedy for wrinkles? Hee.


Rachel L Alba profile image

Rachel L Alba 9 months ago from Every Day Cooking and Baking

Hi Phyllis, I am not a superstitious person, but believe in the power of God to heal. But He did give us things of nature. There are a lot of herbs that help with health and healing and things of that nature. I do believe it is better for our bodies to use natural causes then chemicals. Thanks for bringing out this subject.

Blessings to you.


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 9 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Hi Ruby Jean. Yes, it is amazing how the ancients learned and were self-taught. I do know that coconut oil is a wonderful treatment for wrinkles. Also including in the diet foods rich in vitamin B will help prevent wrinkles.

Thanks for reading and commenting, I really appreciate it.


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 9 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Hi Rachel. Thanks for stopping by. I also believe in the power of God to heal - my father taught us well about that. He was a healer, but told us the power if from God. I also believe God put many things on Earth to help us. Right now I am drinking strong black tea which is easing the pain of a bad tooth. When the tea bag is a little cooler I will put that directly on the tooth - it really helps.

Thanks again, I really appreciate your visit. Blessings to you, too, Rachel.


alastar packer 9 months ago

Thanks for your recommendation on the cough, Phyllis. Black Licorice! Have you heard of Bragg's undiluted vinegar? A Granny wise-like lady told me to mix two capfuls of it with a teaspoon of honey. This was a super read. You know I'd heard of the charm for bleeds and the moss, but not the others. Living near the mountains here in NC Granny Women sayings are more or less well-known by many long term residents, but you've added some info, history and sayings that are fun to know!


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 9 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Thank you, Alastar - glad you enjoyed the article. Black licorice always helps me when I have a bad cough. Bragg's undiluted vinegar sounds familiar, I will look for that. I bet there are a whole lot of Granny-isms back in your area, how fun it would be to write them all down. Thanks again. Now you can tell others the new things you learned here. Have a peaceful evening.


phoenix2327 profile image

phoenix2327 9 months ago from United Kingdom

Wonderful hub. I enjoy reading about the old ways. Why have so many turned their backs on this knowledge? I'm glad it still lives on in the Granny Women of today.


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 9 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Hi phoenix. Thank you very much. The old ways are still alive in parts of Appalachia, maybe even more so than we realize. So glad you enjoyed reading the article. Take care and thanks again.


chaz5621 8 months ago

would love to spend time with a healer..are there any that do teachings that you could recommend ..thanks so much


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 8 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Hi chaz5621. I do not personally know any healers who teach others outside their family. You might want to read the article by Jonathan Self at http://irishamerica.com/2013/08/irish-herbal-medic... You can comment at the end of the article. Thank you for reading and commenting.


roob profile image

roob 8 months ago

I don't think the Bible would approve of these charms, where is your source that these are used in Christianity?


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 8 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Hi roob. Thanks for stopping by. I think you are taking some of the words in my article out of context. I never said the charms are used in Christianity, nor did I imply that the Bible would approve.

My only mention of Christianity is:

"When Christianity became more prominent the Irish embraced it - however, they still retained their unshakable faith in the Druid charms."

source:

'Ancient cures, charms, and usages of Ireland; contributions to Irish lore' - by Lady Wilde.

Thank you for the visit and comment.


roob profile image

roob 8 months ago

Interesting I was just wondering where you heard about these charms being used as I have never heard of them before.


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 8 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Hi again, roob. Glad to see you here. I found a lot of ancient Irish folk medicine sites and had a great time researching and reading, but the one by Lady Wilde (Oscar Wilde's mother) was my favorite. Thanks again.


nofixedstars 8 months ago

north to south head to foot alignment to bring down fever: because the sun moves thru the sky (east to west, disappearing in the north overnight); thus moving fever down from the head to the feet by aligning the body with the course of the sun...

my granny was a wisewoman too. her beliefs were often dismissed as superstition and "debased religion", which some of it most definitely was, but she has been proven right about preventing and curing illnesses many times over my life. i believe her loving care pulled me thru a number of illnesses that conventional medicine was failing to heal, and i have honored her memory by using it to care for my own child and by passing her wisdom to my daughter...


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 8 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Hi nofixedstars. What a wonderful heritage and wisdom you have to pass down to your daughter. Thank you for stopping by to read and comment.


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 8 months ago from Shelton

Phyllis, what a fascinating hub.. interesting


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 8 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Ah! Thank you, Frank. I appreciate that.


Patricia Henry 8 months ago

Great article, love it! I Love the picture of the lady spinning, I learned to card wool and spin and weave on my great uncle and aunt's sheep farm in north Yorkshire, also grew up learning a lot of theirs and my grandmother's herbal cures etc. I later became an RN, and nurse practitioner before retiring. but still use a lot of their old recipes for myself and my children. I am 74 now but have passed a lot of this down to my children and grandchildren... Nature knows best! I still collect and dry herbs, make elderberry and rosehip syrup, and much more, by the way, Aligning the sick bed north to south corrects the subtle energy flow...could go into much more detail on that, but enough for now... keep up the good work.


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 8 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Hi Patricia Henry. Thank you, I am glad you love the article. I appreciate your sharing of your remarkable family history. And I really appreciate your explanation of aligning the bed north to south. I have always had to have my bed aligned north to south and it does correct my energy flow. I agree: "Nature knows best!" Thanks again, for reading and commenting.


Vicki 8 months ago

The natural world holds the knowledge to everything as the ancient ones always instinctively knew.I am a firm believer that every illness has a cure through all of nature,and the old ones knew that if they respected,honered and cared about nature and the natural world it would take care of and nurture them.It is a shame too many people today have lost that


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 8 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Well, I must say I agree wiith you, Vicki. Thanks for the visit and commenting.


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 7 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Thanks.


tebo profile image

tebo 7 months ago from New Zealand

Lovely article Phyllis. I really enjoy reading how people in earlier times treated various ailments. It makes sense to use what nature has to offer and it certainly made good sense that they watched the animals eating bark and observed the outcomes. Very informative and interesting hub.


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 7 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Hi tebo. I am glad you enjoy such articles. I found it so interesting researching several sources and stories about those early times. It is so amazing how people learned so much without the technology we have now. Thank you very much for reading and commenting, I appreciate it.


Dave 7 months ago

The reason, that I'm aware of, to sleep with one's head in the north, is to do which side of the equator you are. If you are north of the equator you should sleep with your head in the north.

Some of the reasons, it is suppose to put less strain on the cardiovascular system in the body, also suppose to promote better pressure in the head. Promotes a better nights sleep. Your body is also placed in the correct magnetic orientation inline with the earths.

Dave


juliannehenry profile image

juliannehenry 7 months ago from London

Bring back Grannies advice I say!


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 7 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Hi Dave. Thank you for that explanation. It makes sense.


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 7 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Hi juliannehenry. I must say I agree with you. Thanks for stopping by.


Trellie 7 months ago

The gravitational pull is why


MarieXxZxcanary 7 months ago

Thank you for posting this, it is beautiful and very thoughtful.


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 7 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Hi Marie. You are most welcome. Thank you.


Colleen 7 months ago

North to south orientation-aligning with magnetic north-healing with magnetic fieds


Julie 7 months ago

They didn't have potatoes before Columbus.....


cfin profile image

cfin 7 months ago from The World we live in

This article is strange. Northern Ireland? Why Northern Ireland when it didn't exist until 100 years ago? Why not Ireland? Especially seeing as everything you mention within this article is from all over Ireland, it seems extremely odd to keep mentioning just Northern Ireland. Your summary even says Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales.

Since Northern Ireland only exists due to their rejection of the Irish culture, it seems offensive for you to hand that state our history and culture on a platter as if it belongs to them, or their ancestors. It is in fact offensive and an extremely confusing misrepresentation for readers.


Jennifer Cabbage 7 months ago

I love ur writing!!! Hope to read many more! Thanks to u, I feel I know my place now. I live in the Apps n have a long line of mountain people behind me. I hear them speaking to me thru u! Thank u my friend n please keep them coming! Sending u much love, peace, n happiness!


Linda Robinson60 profile image

Linda Robinson60 7 months ago from Cicero, New York

Wow Phyllis and what an astounding, informative hub, just amazing, I absolutely loved it, You are a very talented writing and so much outstanding detail and descriptions. I like you write about a very diverse topics. So very nice meeting you. I look forward to reading all your hubs. :)


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 7 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Hi Colleen. Looks like everyone is in agreement on the north to south alignment. Thank you for reading and commenting.


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 7 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Hi Jennifer Cabbage. I am so happy to read you are getting in closer touch with your ancestors and finding your path in life. You have a great family heritage to back you up. Thank you so much, Jennifer. Peace and blessings to you.


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 7 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Hi Linda Robinson. Thank you for such a wonderful comment. I am so glad you loved the article. I will be writing more on this and similar topics. Thanks again and have a wonderful day.


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 7 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Hi Julie. Thanks for stopping by. Who did not have potatoes before Columbus? No where in my article did I say anything about Columbus. I did say, "Potatoes have been used since early times to take the redness and pain out of minor burns. A slice of raw potato was immediately placed on a burn."

Thanks again for the visit.


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 7 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Hi cfin. Thanks for reading my article. Also, thanks for pointing something out to me that I had missed. I had begun this article focusing on Northern Ireland then spread out to all of Ireland, which is so rich in the history of healing. I neglected to go back and remove the reference to "Northern Ireland" - I have just made those corrections.. My apologies for not catching it sooner.. If had known it would upset anyone, I would have been more alert to my error. Thanks again, cfin.


Linda Robinson60 profile image

Linda Robinson60 7 months ago from Cicero, New York

You are so very welcome Phyllis and I will be sure to look for them. :) You are an exceptional writer. Linda


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 7 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Thanks again, Linda, this is very kind of you. You inspire me to write more - so I am gathering notes. LOL.


Gregory Vic profile image

Gregory Vic 7 months ago

Very informative hub. It reminds me the Man VS Wild show which takes a lot of its survival techniques from old natives, and the knowledge of special herbs are very important in survival training.


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 7 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

How interesting, Gregory Vic. I have not seen that show. Thanks for reading and commenting.


cfin profile image

cfin 7 months ago from The World we live in

Phyllis, that's ok. The article is beautiful. It's a common mistake. It's quite upsetting to visit something like the giants causeway and see the British government "embracing" our legends, while at the same time, they tried for quite a while to wipe out our culture. The province of Ulster might be a better focus for the north of the island rather than the actual state of NI. Ulster dates way back, and some of its counties remain part of the country of Ireland. It's interesting to research.

Individuals from Northern Ireland can claim to be "Irish" and a minority do, but the actual state of NI is representative of a state created as a result of a refusal to be Irish. Instead the Northern Irish government even embrace anti Irish parades. They renamed cities such as Derry to Londonderry to demoralise the Irish cultural population during plantations. All in all, when referring to history, it's best to say Ireland, or if making a regional reference, mention one of the 32 counties I.e Co.Meath, Co.Tyrone etc or on a larger scale, one of the 4 (4 currently but there used to be more) provinces such as Connacht, Ulster, Munster or Leinster.


Joan Rea 7 months ago

since potatoes were native to the Americas and were unknown in Europe until after the European invasion, the use of potatoes on burns and cuts could have gone east with the potatoes from south America. potatoes here were used to draw the inflammation out of festering wounds.


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 7 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Thanks, cfin. What an interesting history you provide here. It really is quite important as to how to make references to Ireland and its counties, histories, etc. Thank you for helping me to understand that - I really appreciate your support and valuable lesson.


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 7 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

How interesting, Joan. The mention of potatoes in my article is noted as a remedy of "early times". It seems to confuse readers as to the origins of the potato and when it first appeared in Ireland. There are controversial legends / histories on that subject. What I meant by "early times' is in the since the early days of Granny Women in Appalachia. Maybe I should make that clear in the article? Thanks for commenting.


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 7 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Thanks.


Sheilajean Whitefield 7 months ago

The North-South alignment has to do with the electro-magnetic "ley" lines of the Earth Mother. The patients` head should be pointing towards the South in the Northern Hemisphere.


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 7 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Thank you, Sheilajean.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 7 months ago from Southern Illinois

Phillis, I replied to your email twice and both times it was returned. I do not know what's going on with email. I told you not to worry about my feelings with the site. I want to write there. I think it will be fun. I am having difficulty putting a picture on the site. Could you please help me with this. Thank you so much....


sandy 7 months ago

I am from Appalachia. I found this really interesting.


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 7 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Of course, Ruby Jean. I will be happy to help you. I will contact you on TCE. Thank you.


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 7 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Hi Sandy. Thank you for reading and commenting. So glad you find the article interesting. I appreciate your visit.


colbaltblu 7 months ago

North and South are representations of polaraties and elemental properties


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 7 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Thanks, colbaltblu.


Alison Thyne 6 months ago

wow .. thank you so much for that wonderful world of knowledge.. Just proves to me again that one never gets to old to stop learning ... even in death, something new is learned .. Alison Thyne.. South Africa..


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 6 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Hi Alison Thyne. You are most welcome. Glad you enjoyed my article.


Cynthia Haltom profile image

Cynthia Haltom 6 months ago from Diamondhead

I appreciate you in depth knowledge. Many ancient remedies and treatments are being recognized as useful. The movement to use natural substances to treat illness is a sensible option. Big Pharma has a monopoly over the public and a movement to return to natural foods and medicines are slowing coming as alternatives.


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 6 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Hi Cynthia. Yes, more and more people are turning back to home remedies and the bounty of Nature. Thanks for reading and commenting, I appreciate it.


caretakerray profile image

caretakerray 6 months ago from Michigan U.S.A.

Having Irish in my ancestry, I really liked the Celtic stories of folk medicine! Great hub! I'll be reading more of these


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 6 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Hi caretakerray. So glad you liked the article. Thank you for reading and commenting. I also have Irish in my ancestry, so had a great time researching and writing this. Thanks again.


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 6 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Hi caretakerray. Thank you, I am glad you liked the article. I have Irish ancestry, too, so had a great time researching and writing this hub. Thanks again.


vespawoolf profile image

vespawoolf 2 months ago from Peru, South America

I enjoy reading about past civilizations. Natural cures have always interested me, as well. Potatoes and other plants are often used to cure ills in Peru, especially in country areas where medicine isn't widely available. Very interesting. Thank you for sharing.


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 2 months ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Hi vespawoolf, nice to hear from you. Natural cures are usually the best. It is interesting that this practice is active in Peru. Thanks for sharing that. And thanks for reading and commenting on my article.


Nancy 4 weeks ago

I so loved this article. I am writing a series of short stories honoring our Wisdom Keepers of the past...how they used herbs and foods to heal. Love this...I am glad to know someone else who honors these past practices :)


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 4 weeks ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Hi Nancy. Thank you for reading and commenting on my article, glad you like it so much. That is wonderful you are writing on this wisdom from the past.


Betty Cardaropoli 4 weeks ago

Bed must be placed the way a river runs.


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 4 weeks ago from High desert of Nevada. Author

Hi Betty. I never heard that a bed must be placed the way a river runs, but it sure makes sense. Thank you for reading and commenting.

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