Elder has been part of the healer’s medicine chest for hundreds of years – flowers, berries, leaves and bark all finding an important place.
The Symbol of both death and rebirth. Like the Winter Solstice, it highlights a time of evolution. The Celts believed that it was during this time that their sun or solar spirit was held prisoner. Just as Pryderi was forced into exile. It is also a time of trouble and struggle for supremacy. In deed what is now will one day be no more, and that which is to come, will also, one day be no more.
Elder as a cure is mentioned by all the early 16th century herbalists including Culpeper who swore by decoctions of the bark or leaves for dropsy and piles and by Gerard in his “Herbal or General History of Plants” ….
'…. The tender and green leaves of the elder tree with barley meal parched, doth remove hot swellings and is good for those that are burnt or scalded, and for such as be bitten with a mad dog and that they glue and heal up hollow ulcers.'