Echoes of the Garden

A Place in the World

A Party or a Nap?

While most of the cultures familiar with lettuce considered it definitely not the herb to indulge in on your way to a hot date on a feast night, the country that cultivated it originally had a very different opinion of it.

In Ancient Egypt, lettuce was firmly associated with the God, Min

Min is the Egyptian God of fertility. He was the son of Isis and Osiris and the husband of Iabet, personification of the East and Goddess of fertility, and Repyt. 

He was also married, along with Reshep, to Qadesh.

He had many followers in Qift and Akhmim. His sanctuaries were surrounded by beds of lettuce and his worship included public festivals with processions and offerings.

By Institute for the Study of the Ancient World (https://www.flickr.com/photos/isawnyu/8252351353/) [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Egyptian God, Min

See page for author [CC BY 4.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Egyptian Goddess, Repyt

By UnknownRama (RamaOwn work) [CeCILL (http://www.cecill.info/licences/Licence_CeCILL_V2-en.html) or CC BY-SA 2.0 fr (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/fr/deed.en)], via Wikimedia Commons

Egyptian Goddess, Qadesh

Pretty much every where else lettuce is considered to be something of a wet blanket.

“To dream of lettuces is said to portend trouble.”
Richard Folkard in 'Plant Lore' (1884)

I would like to point out that our Noble Interest isn't so socially awkward that you can't take it anywhere. It is being grown on the International Space Station to test the viability of “cut and come again” culture for our astronauts. This article is from October of last year. I haven't checked for follow-ups yet although I doubt the lettuce disappointed.

I have been unable to find any other uses for lettuce or any ways in which it has significantly impacted society. If you know of any that I couldn't find, I 'd be glad to hear about them. Please share them with me in the comments below.

I don't think I forgot anything. Thanks for stopping by!

Tomorrow I'll share Tales of Lettuce. Spoiler alert: Our Noble Interest gets eaten every time.

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The information and recipes contained on this site are presented for intellectual and historical interest only. If you are looking for medical advice, please consult with a licensed physician. If you choose to try any recipe for the sake of adventure or curiosity, you do so at your own risk.

About Me

About Me

My interest in plants started young. While most of my friends were playing with Barbie or dreaming of horses, I was out in the fields of our farm creating imaginary villages and caching collected seeds, roots and herbs against winter need. When I discovered the library and field guides, I realized that I had found my passion- the interaction between plants and people. While my caching habits have switched to saving more useful plants, some things don’t change. I still …
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