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Atten-shun!

Ribwort

Ribwort

It could be a view of the Galaxy or, if we step a little closer, we could be looking down on the solar system from the ecliptic north pole. Maybe it’s Saturn or Jupiter, they both have loads of moons. We know of even more now we have satellites pottering round out there. Talking about even more satellites, it could be a view of earth, showing all the communication, military and other extraneous satellites that we have lobbed up there over the last twenty years or so. It must be nearly as hard to find a parking space in earth orbit, as it is on earth these days.

But really of course, it’s Ribwort Plantain. It grows best in meadows and disturbed earth and sometimes archaeologists like to think that it shows that the area was farmed or at least grazed in ‘The Olden Days’. If you have a bad cough, a nice cup of tea made from Ribwort leaves should have you better in no time, and while you are waiting for the tea to brew, you could rub a leaf on those nettle or insect stings to relieve that nasty itchy tingle.

Mrs Grieve, in “A Modern Herbal“-  published in 1936, mentions that Ribwort Plantain was often called Kemps. This, she says, is because children used to play a game with the flower stalks, sword fighting with them until the stalk broke.

And the connection is? The Saxon for a soldier is cempa. Could this be related to camp and camping I wonder?

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