Mistletoe is a parasitic plant which grows on the trunks of other trees, especially the oak tree. It is generally classified as a shrub and has the capability to photosynthesize on its own when attached to a host. This well-known plant is of huge significance when it comes to the holy occasion of Christmas. Since ancient times, mistletoe has been used for decorative purposes, especially during winter season. This plant is believed to drive both evil spirits and witches away. Mistletoe is also presumed to possess magical, mysterious powers and is also considered to be a symbol of love, fertility and romance. It is believed to bring health and luck to people of the house and was often called the 'all-heal' plant. There are various superstitions surrounding this plant, the most common one being the Greek tradition of "kissing under the mistletoe". Scroll further and find out what are the popular superstitions and traditions revolving around the plant.
Mistletoe Myths & Beliefs
When it's Christmas, you see Mistletoe everywhere. Want to know some superstitions related to the plant? Read further for some interesting myths and beliefs associated with it.
- Popular belief suggests that, in order to have good luck, happiness and a long married life, you must kiss your love under the mistletoe. In olden days, it was also considered as a promise to marry. In case you avoid this, bad luck will follow you forever.
- The ancient Druids considered mistletoe as the bearer of various magical properties. It was particularly known for its healing properties and was said to would bring harmony and happiness to the household.
- It is considered to be bad luck to take down the mistletoe immediately after Christmas celebrations; it should be kept intact the whole year round and should be replaced with a fresh one prior to the Christmas celebrations next year.
- Unmarried women, to see their future husbands in their dream, used to keep some sprigs of the local church’s mistletoe under their pillow at night.
- It is also believed that the type of flames that arise from burning the mistletoe predict the future married life of young women. Steady flames depict a happy married life whereas spluttering flames indicate a bad tempered husband.
- As per some olden traditions, a mistletoe berry had to be given to a young lady before kissing her. Once the berries were finished, the man had to stop kissing her.
- Mistletoe, also known as ‘Celtic-All-Heal’, has long been seen as a symbol of fertility. This belief was very prominent during 19th century.
- The girls who refuse to kiss under the mistletoe are believed to encounter bad luck for the coming year.
- Mistletoe is considered to have a great power against witches and lightning. It is also believed to be an effective cure for whooping cough and acts as an antidote for poison, epilepsy, barrenness etc.
- Some people believe that mistletoe should not be bought inside the house before the eve of New Year; it leads to major financial problems in the coming year.