"Nature alone is antique, and the oldest art a mushroom" Thomas Carlyle
The terms "mushroom" and "toadstool" go back centuries and were never precisely defined, nor was there consensus on application. During the 15th and 16th centuries, the terms mushrom, mushrum, muscheron, mousheroms, mussheron, or musserouns were used.
The term "mushroom" and its variations may have been derived from the French word mousseron in reference to moss (mousse). Delineation between edible and poisonous fungi is not clear-cut, so a "mushroom" may be edible, poisonous, or unpalatable.
Cultural or social phobias of mushrooms and fungi may be related. The term "fungophobia" was coined by William Delisle Hay of England, who noted a national superstition or fear of "toadstools".
The word "toadstool" has apparent analogies in Dutch padde(n)stoel (toad-stool/chair, mushroom) and German Krötenschwamm (toad-fungus, alt. word for panther cap). In German folklore and old fairy tales, toads are often depicted sitting on toadstool mushrooms and catching, with their tongues, the flies that are said to be drawn to the Fliegenpilz, a German name for the toadstool, meaning "flies' mushroom". This is how the mushroom got another of its names, Krötenstuhl (a less-used German name for the mushroom), literally translating to "toad-stool".
I create fabric flowers but I am drawn to mushrooms and fungi. For many reasons.
Mushrooms are powerful.
They have healing properties, and are a wonderful source of nutrition.
They also have a dark side and can be fatally poisonous.
From a Witches Diary
"At the first light of daybreak, a walk through the forest, sticky vines clinging to my skirt, I walk toward the foot of the largest tree in the center clearing. An old oak tree with broad brown ragged leaves. Dark green moss runs down the bark and there at the base I see what I have come for. Small black/brown velvety knobs. I bend down, my knees are creaking, I lean on my cane and check the long stems, they have ripples and ridges on them, there are about 20 , enough for a thick, dark brew..."
Secretive and shrouded shades of grey. the fruit.
Full bodied stems to be dried and sliced for tea.
The dark underside of the mushroom head when detached from the stem to be dried till the next moon and then to be ground into a fine powder.
Now to chop them up for the brew.
More to come.