Yew

Yew : A History

By (author) Fred Hageneder

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The yew is one of the most fascinating and versatile life forms on Earth, botanically rich and intriguing and culturally almost without comparison. In history, mythology, religion, folklore, medicine and in warfare, the yew bears timeless witness to a deep relationship with mankind. It is the tree that Darwin often rested beneath and under which he wanted to be buried until public opinion decreed a higher-status interment in Westminster Abbey. It was under the great Ankerwyke yew at Runnymede in Buckinghamshire that Magna Carta is believed to have been sworn by the barons in 1215. In 1803, Wordsworth celebrated the great yew in Lorton Vale, 'single, in the midst of its own darkness', a tree under which both the great Quaker George Fox and John Wesley preached. In many cultures it is the Tree of Life, and its association with churchyards in Britain and Europe has given it a particular claim on the popular imagination as a living link between our landscapes and those of the distant past. Fred Hageneder's fascinating book is the first to cover all aspects of the botany as well as the cultural history and remarkable mythology of the genus Taxus.

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  • Hardback | 320 pages
  • 200 x 266 x 26mm | 1,138.53g
  • 01 Apr 2007
  • The History Press Ltd
  • Sutton Publishing Ltd
  • Stroud
  • English
  • 400 colour illustrations
  • 0750945974
  • 9780750945974
  • 970,673

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Author Information

Fred Hageneder is an experienced author in the field of ethnobotany. He is a founding member and the chairman of the Friends of the Trees, a registered charity concerned with nature conservation, and a member of the AYG (Ancient Yew Group). His books include: The Spirit of Trees: Science, Symbiosis and Inspiration, The Heritage of Trees: History, Culture and Symbolism and The Living Wisdom of Trees. He lives in the Cotswolds.

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