Rowan Tree Birth Sign
January 21st – February 17th
Rowan Tree Symbolism
The second tree in the Ogham alphabet, the Rowan, commonly known as the mountain ash. Before I do a word from Robert Graves who said that the alphabet was originally a secret language used only by trained Druids to communicate between themselves and quite possibly it was signed like deaf and dumb language. (My sisters and I had a secret language when we were kids and it was such fun!) Like all mystical training in ancient times Druidry was an oral tradition, so that would make sense.
There are some examples of the Celtic alphabet discovered which were written as if lying down so it seems it could have been written either way. If there was a reason for this it would seem to have been lost. If it was being used to communicate with the hands, Graves says the four groups were placed from thumb to pinky from the tips of the fingers down each joint of the left hand and pointed to with the right pointer. (Draw a hand and write them on and you’ll get what I mean.)
Rowan Tree Meaning
Just as well they started using sticks and rocks I say, or we may not know about them today, except that the Bards put them in a coded poem called Gwion’s riddle to keep them for future generations. The correspondences for the Rowan tree is the letter L, it’s Ogham name is Luis (Lush) and its symbolic meaning is protection, expression and connection. The names for each letter is said to be after the Druid who worked on the letter at their conception.
The closest thing I can come up with for an Australian equivalent is the native raspberry (Rupus parvifoluys), which is a part of the same Rosacaea family as the European Rowan. Both trees have an abundant display of blood-red berries, befitting the translation if the word Luis – ‘flame or radiance’.
Rowan Tree Folk Legend
Legend has it that if you ate the berries you would be young and joyful forever, as were the fae folk who were said to have brought the first seed to Ireland before the celts were there. These fairies were the Tuatha de Danann, a magical tribe of people of the goddess Danu. Women wore garlands of the berries for protection. They were tied around the horns of cows and necks of pigs to keep them healthy and safe. The timber was used in housing to protect the house, in cradles to protect babies and many other creative ways as a means of protection. The bark makes great cattle food.
Rowan berries are full of vitamin A and C. There are many medicinal uses for the berries as well in various concoctions and tinctures for healing and transformational purposes, but I will leave that up to you to research as it is not my field of expertise. As Rowan protects the home, animals and children, it is also a protector of our spirit.
“Rowan is the ancient enchantress who holds
all creation in her circle of light.” (Ellen Hopman).
It is called “the Druids tree”. The Goddess Brigid, the patroness of Druids and bards, has three arrows made from Rowan wood. In your meditation create a circle of protection by invoking Brigid (envisaging her standing guard with her Rowan arrows, ) repelling negativity and allowing only good and uplifting forces to enter your circle. Before I go I would like to share with you the Druids Prayer.
“Deep within the still center of my being may I find peace
Silently within the center if the Grove may I share peace
And calmly within the greater circle of mankind
May I radiate peace. “
You may say “what a beautiful prayer and smile and do nothing else with this gift from our ancestors – but from personal experience – this single prayer of the Druids puts you straight into your heart center where you naturally exude peace. That’s magic. From beneath the sacred Oaks. by druid priestess © Jyoti Eagles