Hi, my loves and welcome to WiccaNow. Recently I’ve been sharing guides for all my favourite magickal plants and herbs, like this guide to the magickal properties of fennel. I’ve also shared a post about using ginger in magick, one all about lemon balm, another about oaks and acorns and most recently a post about the magickal properties of oregano. I want to continue this today by sharing a guide to the magickal properties of parsley!
Parsley has an interesting history and has been connected to death and the underworld in many different cultures in Europe. The magickal properties of parsley include protection, purification, lust, love and communication with spirits among others. Its medicinal benefits are varied and include being full of antioxidants, helping with skin irritations and aiding digestion.
Disclaimer: Any medicinal benefits given here are a product of my own research and as such should not be taken over the advice of trained medical professionals. If you are ill, please go and see a doctor. Always make sure that anything you consume is 100% safe. If you are pregnant, consult your doctor or midwife before consuming something you haven’t tried before.
History of Parsley
Parsley, also called Petroselinum crispum, is a flowering plant in the Apiaceae family which also contains celery and carrot. It grows all over the world and prefers moist but well-drained soil with a lot of sun. There are 3 varieties of parsley which might commonly be used; curly leaf, flat leaf and root parsley.
Native to the Mediterranean regions of Western Asia and Southern Europe, it was believed by the Ancient Greeks that parsley sprung from the blood of the hero, and son of death, Archemorus as he was consumed by serpents. This led to the belief that parsley was sacred and caused superstitions about it being placed on tables in the home. It was used to decorate tombs and was made into wreaths for the victors of funeral games. The Greeks also fed parsley to their horses to give them strength.
Parsley was used medicinally long before it was used as a garnish for food. It was believed to help digestion, toothaches and bronchitis among other things. Pliny the Elder (23-79AD) considered it a cure for food poisoning due to bad fish and also used it as a flavouring for brothers and sauces. Many people also believed that it was an antidote to poisons.
Parsleys use as a garnish can be traced back to the Romans. They liked to eat parsley the day after feasting as they thought it would help with their hangovers. It was also placed on the tables during the feast and was worn around the necks of the feasters as they believed that it would absorb the oders of the food they were feasting on. They would consume a few leaves at the end of feasting to freshen their breath and get rid of any lingering food-related smells, particularly garlic.
The Romans are responsible for bringing parsley to England. They carried it with them during their campaigns and presumably planted seeds wherever they went. This is actually how quite a lot of herbs were spread around Europe. It’s thought that the Charlemagne (742-814AD) increased the popularity of parsley because he had it planted in all of his gardens.
Parsley was used medicinally all through the middle ages. The famous botanist Nicholas Culpepper (1616-1654) talked about parsley bringing “urine and women’s curses”. This references it’s diuretic effects and the belief that it could bring on delayed menstruation while also relieving cramps and pains associated with the menstrual cycle.
Early settlers to the Americas took parsley seeds with them and introduced it there, where it became a popular addition to spice cabinets and gardens.
Fun Facts about Parsley
- The key ingredient of salsa verde is parsley. It’s also one of the main ingredients of tabbouleh.
- Parsley is a great companion plant for both tomatoes and roses.
- Monarch butterflies like parsley.
- The Romans has a saying “the man’s in need of parsley” for people who looked very ill. This originated because they used to sprinkle corpses with parsley to deodorise them.
- The Romans also believed that parsley was magickal and believed eating the seeds would make them invisible and super strong.
- Superstitious farmers in Medieval times refused to plant parsley because of the long germination time of the seeds. They believed that this was due to the seeds having to go to hell and back 7x before they could sprout. Some farmers were so scared of it that they refused to grow it at all.
- The name parsley comes from the Greek word “petroselinon” which means “rock celery” because parsley likes to grow in between rocks and on walls.
- Farmers used to plant parsley in the fields used to graze sheep. They believed that it would prevent illness and keep their flocks healthy. Unfortunately, this had the unwanted effect of attracting rabbits and hares to the fields as well since parsley has a strong aroma and attracted rabbits from long distances. The farmers then tried planting carnations, hoping that the rabbits and hares would eat those rather than the parsley. This also didn’t work and the animals kept eating the parsley and trampled the carnations instead.
- Because of its association with death, many people believed that if parsley wouldn’t grow in the household garden, death would soon claim someone in that household.
- Romans used to tuck parsley into their togas to keep bad luck away. They wore crowns made from parsley because they believed that it would keep drunkenness at bay.
- Parsley is actually a biannual plant. It grows bushy leaves in its first year and flowers in its second. If you are using parsley as a kitchen herb, it’s better to grow a new plant every year as you won’t get many leaves from the plant in its second year. Insects will love you though, which may be reason enough to keep parsley on for 2 years in a row!
Medicinal Benefits of Parsley
All parts of parsley (the seeds, root and leaves) are used to make medicine. One common medicinal use of parsley is to consume it orally in order to treat bladder infections. It can also be taken to aid with gastrointestinal disorders, constipation, coughs, asthma and high blood pressure. Some women take it to bring on their menstrual flow.
A parsley poultice can be applied to the skin in order to even out any patchy areas and to help chapped or cracked skin to heal. It may also help with bruises and insect bites. Parsley is thought to stimulate hair growth.
Pregnant women should be very careful using parsley medicinally or in very large amounts as it can cause miscarriage. Consuming it in reasonable amounts as food is safe. Consuming very large amounts of parsley is considered unsafe as it can cause liver problems. Applying parsley seed oil directly to the skin is also considered unsafe as it makes the skin very sensitive to sunlight.
- Helps to remove dark patches on the skin
- May help with UTIs
- May reduce bruises
- May aid digestion
- May prevent fluid retention
- May help with kidney health, particularly kidney stones
- High in Vitamin K
- High in antioxidants
- Supports bone health
- Supports healthy eyes
- May improve heart health
- Fights inflammation
- Strengthens bones
- Freshens breath
- May help to protect against diabetes
Magickal Properties of Parsley
If you want to provoke lust in a relationship, chew some parsley leaves together. If you want this relationship to last, make sure that you don’t cut parsley though because when you cut the parsley stems you’ll be cutting your love as well. Wear an amulet close to your skin with dried parsley in it to attract love and fertility into your life. This doesn’t have to be physical fertility but may be the seeds of new exciting ideas or opportunities.
If you want to harness the protective magickal properties of parsley, place some seeds onto your altar, or if you don’t keep an altar on a windowsill. This will keep negative energies from entering and plaguing you.
Take a bath with fresh parsley to purify and cleanse both your body and your mind.
Take dried parsley and roll an oil-covered candle in it. Burn this candle during psychic or divination work for more powerful results.
Other Magickal Properties of Parsley
- Communication with the spirit world
Magickal Associations of Parsley
Deities – Persephone
Magickal Correspondences of Parsley
Zodiac – Libra, Virgo and Cancer
Planet – Mercury
Element – Air
Gender – Masculine
So, my lovelies, I hope this guide has given you all the information that you were looking for about the magickal properties of parsley. May your spirit be protected, your ideas fertile and your communication open and strong.
Until next time,