A Most Aromatic Herb
Hyssop originates from southern and south-eastern Europe. (Also known as Za'atar the English call it hyssop.)
Hyssop is one of the most often mentioned aromatic herbs and essential oils in the Bible, coming third after only Myrrh and Frankincense. According to Dr. David Stewart in his book Healing Oils of the Bible, Hyssop (Hyssopus officinalis) was used by the ancients for "purification from sin, addictions and destructive habits" as well as "respiratory relief, decongestant, expectorant, repeller of evil spirits". During the tenth plague, hyssop was used to repel the "Evil spirit" of the "angel of death".
Hyssop is a name of Greek origin. The Hyssopos of Dioscorides was named from azob (a holy herb), because it was used for cleaning sacred places. It is alluded to in the Scriptures: "Purge me with Hyssop, and I shall be clean."
Hyssop is a fragile, bushy herb, and an evergreen plant of the mint family, Lamiaceae (or Lamiateae). The aroma of hyssop is strong; bitter and sweet at the same time and it attracts bees. The hyssop flowers are purple-blue in color, but some have pink or white flowers.
Traditionally a "strewing plant," the hyssop stems and leaves carry an essential oil which is useful for treating respiratory complaints and may support the immune system. Hyssop is also helpful in stimulating alertness and to relieve anxiety, arthritis, asthma, respiratory infections, parasites, sore throats, and more.
Go Organic With Organic Hyssop Tea
Hyssop tea is a pleasant beverage with an agreeable flavor. It can aid an ailing stomach, being brewed with the green tops of the herb. Sometimes the green tops of hyssop are boiled in soup and given to those who suffer with asthma.
In America, an infusion of the leaves is used externally for the relief of muscular rheumatism, and also for bruises and discolored contusions. The green herb, bruised and applied, will heal cuts promptly.
An old country remedy using hyssop is a tea beverage that is made with the fresh green tops and drunk several times throughout the day. This is said to help rheumatism. In addition, hyssop baths are recommended as part of the cure but one would have to use a considerable quantity for adequate results.
The healing virtues of the hyssop plant are due to a particular volatile oil.
Uses for hyssop
- Hyssop oil is used as ingredient in some French liqueurs.
- Hyssop can also be used in the kitchen.
- The hyssop flowers and leaves can be used to flavor dishes, including soups, salads, sauces, meat dishes, vegetable dishes and fruit salads.
- Fresh and dried hyssop flowers are also used as decoration
Hyssop Tea Recipe
Infuse a quarter of an ounce of dried hyssop flowers in a pint of boiling water for ten minutes; sweeten with honey, and take a wineglassful three times a day. Said to treat debility of the chest. It is also considered a powerful vermifuge. (Ref: Old Cookery Book.)
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