Masterwort is a species of flowering plant in the family Apiaceae. It is native to the mountains of Central and Southern Europe, but has been widely introduced outside its native range. It is a smooth, perennial plant, the stout, furrowed stem growing 2 to 3 feet high. The dark-green leaves, which somewhat resemble those of Angelica, are on very long foot-stalks and are divided into `three leaflets, each of which is often again sub-divided into three. The umbels of flowers are large and many-rayed, the corollas white; the fruit has very broad wings.
Masterwort is a warming herb used to support heat in the body. Traditional use of the root includes chewing it or gargling with a decoction to relieve a toothache and steeping it in wine to help relieve a fever or treat liver disease, jaundice, leprosy, coughs, and to promote menstruation. Use of the leaves include applying them to wounds to encourage healing. Masterwort tea is said to aid digestion. Masterwort is used as a flavouring for various liqueurs and bitters. Its roots and leaves have been used in the traditional Austrian medicine internally (as tea, liqueurs and wine) and externally (as fumigation, tincture or incense) for treatment of disorders of the gastrointestinal tract, skin, respiratory tract, cardiovascular system, infections, fever, flu and colds.
Magickally Sprinkling an area with the powdered root, or a decoction of the root is said to force any resident spirits to make themselves known. Carrying the root in your pocket will help keep evil beings from bothering you, and planting some near your door will keep them from entering your house. Wash your weapons with a decoction of masterwort root to ensure they strike true, for hunting or battle.
Masterwort is mildly toxic and large doses can cause hallucinations. Masterwort should not be used during pregnancy.
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