Cretan Herbs in Greek Mythology

February 7, 2018

Greek herbs and especially dittany had a special place in Greek mythology.


Zeus, the Κing of Olympian gods, was born in the Dikteon Andron cave, on the Cretan mountain of Psiloritis. As a thanksgiving for his upbringing there, Zeus gave to Crete the beautiful and healthy herb Dittany.


The shepherds noticed that wild goats would seek out dittany after being wounded by arrows. After the plant was eaten by the goats, the arrows would fall off their skin and their wounds would be healed. Shepherds also discovered that eating dittany was beneficial to healing human wounds as well. Hence, they developed medicines made from dittany leaves.


According to Virgil’s version of the Trojan War, Aeneas was severely wounded by an arrow so deeply embedded that it could not be removed. His mother, the Greek goddess Aphrodite (Venus), gathered some Cretan dittany from Mount Ida of the island of Crete and applied it to Aeneas’ wound, causing the arrow to drop out and the wound to  immediately heal.


Aphrodite’s sister, goddess Artemis is also connected to dittany and was often crowned with a wreath of dittany on her statues in temples to honour her.


Don’t forget that this is a Cretan Herbal Teas week which means that until Sunday the 11th of February you can purchase any of our herbal remedies with a 20% discount! You can find them here:



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