Notes White Wormwood

But her end is bitter as wormwood, sharp as a two-edged sword.

Proverbs 5:4 (KJV)

Zohary maintains that this is most likely to be the biblical species in the Holy Land (ZOH). A. judaica is similarly used. Bedouins sell both species in Cairo markets. Herba-alba is used in native perfumery. The drink absinthe is made from a similar species, and thousands of gallons were once consumed annually, especially in France. It is said at first to produce pleasant sensations, inspiring the mind with grandiose ideas, making one " drunken with wormwood." Others compare the effects of the smoke from various species of Artemisia with smoke from Cannabis. Bedouins believe that the fumes will keep away the cosmopolitan evil eye, perhaps a parallel with Amerindian smudging. Such smudgings are occasionally visited by police officials because the Artemisia smoke also smells like Cannabis smoke. Bedouins use dry wooly galls from the wormwood for tinder to start fires (BIB). In Lebanon, Philips maintains that A. arborescens, A. herba-alba, A. judaica, and A. maritima are used interchangeably.

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