Who doesn’t adore lavender, that lovely eradicator of the blues, anger and insomnia?
It is generally accepted that the word “lavender” stems from the Latin lavare, “to wash,” because the Romans used the herb extensively in their baths. But in early Latin, lavender was known as livendula, meaning “to turn blue,” from the same root as our word “livid.”
Lavender has long been used in love potions. Still today, the primary market for lavender essential oil is in perfumes and cosmetics. It is also used to scent love notes and clothing. Tucked in your chest of drawers, it makes an effective moth repellent. Ironically, despite its romantic associations, during the Renaissance it was believed that lavender worn with rosemary would preserve a woman’s chastity.