Economic Botany

, Volume 58, Supplement 1, pp S174–S202 | Cite as

Medicinal plants of Mt. Pelion, Greece

  • Brussell David Eric 
Special Section on Medicinal Plants


This study focuses on plants used for medicinal purposes in the Mt. Pelion area of Greece; however other plant uses were noted when discovered. A total of 225 taxa representing 77 families are presented along with habitat data and ethnobotanical information when relevant. Some notes on related species are also included. In addition to ethnobotanical field research which included collection of voucher specimens, ancient literature pertaining to plant usage was also consulted. Local markets that sold wild plants or their products were investigated as well. Some plants not known to be ethnobotanically significant were also collected in order to learn more about species distribution on Mt. Pelion. It is possible that ancient plant usage information that was lost due to the destruction of classical literary works has survived in the oral tradition in the Mt. Pelion area and elsewhere in Greece. A number of little known psychoactive and narcotic plant uses (including ivy as an additive to wine) are reported in this publication.

Key Words

Medicinal plants Greek folk medicine ethnopharmacology medical botany materia medica phytomedicines ancient Greek ethnobotany traditional healing phytotherapy history of medicine Mediterranean ethnobotany Greek plant folklore psychoactive plants narcotic plants sacerdotal plants altered states ivy mandrake yew aphrodisiacs wine additives anaesthetics cancer medicines Eleusinian Mysteries 

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Copyright information

© The New York Botanical Garden 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • Brussell David Eric 
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Plant BiologySouthern Illinois UniversityCarbondale

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