March 10, 2012

At the Aconite Café...



... it's still winter, and yet...

Ah, but I see winter aconite is poison:
In Greek and Roman mythology, Medea tried to kill Theseus by poisoning him by putting aconite in his wine, in that culture thought to be the saliva of Cerberus, the three-headed dog who guarded the Underworld. Hercules dragged Cerberus up from the Underworld, while the dog turned his face away from the light, barking and depositing saliva along the path. The saliva hardened in the soil and produced its lethal poison in the plants that grew from the soil. Because it was formed and grew on hard stones, farmers called it 'aconite' (from the Greek akone, meaning 'whetstone').
Medea is an anagram for Meade. Meade, who knows all about plants and who, upon seeing this photograph, said "winter aconite." Checking anagrams... Ann, I erect it, ow!... Well, well. The subject Meadhouse fan fiction has already come up on the blog today.

16 comments:

edutcher said...

Oh, my! I didn't know I was starting a new genre.

For Heaven's sake, don't tell Titus.

Bob said...

Another species of aconite called variously Monkshood or Wolfsbane is famous both as a poison and also as a medicine; it's the plant from the movie The Wolfman:

Even a man who is pure in heart
And says his prayers by night
May become a wolf
When the wolfbane blooms
And the moon is full and bright.


It's used as a muscle rub and as a poison in the Ellis Peters novel Monkshood, one of the early Brother Cadfael mysteries.

Chip S. said...

Sadly, another anagram is...

I aint erect now.

John Lynch said...

The Meadia is biased.

chickenlittle said...

Aconitine, the "Queen of Poisons" (Arsenic is the "King") appears to be the active ingredient.

Aconitine has many anagrams. My favorite:
An Icon Tie

rhhardin said...

Derbyshire on Fluke (podcast).

MadisonMan said...

I walked to the Cemetery today, and the daffodils at the family plot are up, although not blooming yet. I suspect by the end of the week things will be.

chickenlittle said...

@Meade:
That corpse you planted last year in your garden, Has it begun to sprout? Will it bloom this year? Or has the sudden frost disturbed its bed? Oh keep the Dog far hence, that’s friend to men, Or with his nails he’ll dig it up again!

traditionalguy said...

It's build me up buttercup in early March, and it's why do you let me down in late March.

But it's a sunny 64F with no wind today.

Tyrone Slothrop said...

O, nice tea!

Lem said...

Obama is not eligible to be POTUS.

John Burgess said...

Well, you have one of the principle ingredients for a Flying Potion to hand.

garage mahal said...

Awesome day downtown at the rally. A good 40,000 strong. Wonder if Meadehouse attended?

Chip S. said...

@Lem, Mick writes for Pravda?

He's eligible, just not capable.

Ann Althouse said...

"Awesome day downtown at the rally. A good 40,000 strong. Wonder if Meadehouse attended?"

Check the next post!

rhhardin said...

I've forgotten what they're protesting.

They ought to have a sign that says.