Pliny pliny


"Here we must mention the awe felt for this plant by the Gauls. The Druids - for so their magicians are called - held nothing more sacred than the mistletoe and the tree that bears it, always supposing that tree to be the oak. But they choose groves of oaks for the sake of the tree alone, and they never perform any of their rites except in the presence of a branch of it; so that it seems probable that the priests themselves may derive their name from the Greek word for that tree.* In fact, they think that everything that grows on it has been sent from heaven and is a proof that the tree was chosen by the god himself...."

---Pliny XVI, 249. Other sources indicate that the mistletoe, though commonly found on apple trees, only achieved sacred recognition when it grew on the oak. Analysis of the stomach contents of recently exhumed bodies of people evidently executed in druidical rituals show that their stomachs contained pollen from the mistletoe.
Reply to: ITRDB Dendrochronology Forum
Subject: Re: Query, quercal
Dick Meehan asks:
> Does anyone out there have any oak tree lore they'd like to share or
> point to? I am working on a literary matter in which the testimony of
> the oaks will be featured. Oak>oke>ac>eiche>aig...what's the proto-
> indoeuropean?

Wrong etymology. Try drus>drys>dhrys (as in Druid(s) who danced around under same. The IE would probably be *drus. The oldest reference to same that I know of is on a 5th century B.C. lead tablet found in the Zeus sanctuary at Dodona where a petitioner asks the oracle: "When is the best time to cut the evergreen oak?" The oracle's response is not recorded.

rlm / dak