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Thistle (The)

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The species called Silybum Mariānum, we are told, owes the white markings on its leaves to the milk of the Virgin Mary, some of which fell thereon and left a white mark behind. (See Christian Traditions.)

Thistles are said to be a cure for stitch in the side, especially the species called “Our Lady’s Thistle.” According to the Doctrine of Signatures, Nature has labelled every plant, and the prickles of the thistle tell us the plant is efficacious for prickles or stitches in the side. (See Turmeric.)

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Entry taken from Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, edited by the Rev. E. Cobham Brewer, LL.D. and revised in 1895.

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