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Sage Salvia officinalis trivia and folklore

The name comes from Latin “Salveo”, which refers to its ability to heal or to save, which is a reference to its medicinal and culinary properties. In ancient Egypt is was used as a brain tonic, and the Chinese agree that it sharpens the mind and senses. Today, Sage is still considered to be a value medicinal herb, and is used:

In teas for colds and coughs

With vinegar and honey for a gargle to treat a sore throat or laryngitis

In Asthma, for which it is smoked

Fresh leaves can be applied to the gums and teeth to cleanse and strength (ancient Romans used it for cleaning teeth)

Bruised leaves can be applied to sprains

Leaves can be used to dark then hair, and is used to color gray hair

Clary Sage is used as an eyewash to and to treat infections of the eys

Throughout it’s history it has been believed to cure snake bites, eye diseases, infections, epilepsy, intoxication, memory loss, and worms or intestinal diseases.

Sage is still in the US Medica Pharmacopia

White Sage was used by native Americans for purification and healing, and in Ancient Rome it was also a part of religious rituals.

It is a member of the mint family

In the 17th century the Chinese traded 3 to 4 lbs. of tea for 1 lb. of Sage from Dutch traders

Sage is a physical attractive addition to potpourris and dried arrangements…and it smells good!

It is very attractive to bees and Sage Honey is a tasty sweetener.

Sage blends well with a variety of foods….while many of use don’t use it as much as we could, its blends well with Balsamic vinegars, cream cheese, mushrooms, and red well as complimenting Bay, Basil, Black Pepper, Garlic, Lavender, Lemon, onions, oregano, Rosemary, and Thyme.

Sage was one of the ingredients in “Four Thieves Vinegar” which was thought to protect again Black Plague. The same vinegar, for which there are many variations, is still useful as a foot soak to manage fungal infections, as an insect repellant, room freshener, and dandruff.

It is thought to be a natural food preserver, due to its anti-bacterial properties

In the language of flowers, it means “Good Health” and Domestic Virtue”


This article is not meant to diagnose or treat an illness. It is meant for educational purposes. Herbs are natural, but they are medicine. They must be treated with respect. Herbs can have interactions with medications, foods you eat, and even other herbs.

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