Ruis (Elder) Gaelic R – Christmas Ornament
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Ruis (Elder) – 15th in The Gaelic Tree Alphabet Series. The elder tree was prized for many uses culinary, medicinal and mystical. Both the flowers and berries of the elder can be used to make wine. Elderflower wine was said to be drunk at the Beltane celebrations and elderberries were made into a wine at Samhain which was consumed to promote divination and hallucinations. The seeds, bark, leaves and flowers of the elder can be poisonous as is the unripe fruit so special care must have been taken when preparing such beverages. The elder was a highly respected tree in the old Celtic land. It was said to protect from evil spirits as well as inviting them. Cradles were built from elder wood to protect babies and elder bushes were often planted around cattle to keep them healthy. It was believed that planting an elder near your house would also protect it from lightning.
This Gaelic Christmas ornament is 2 inch high, and has the same design on both sides. Designed by Angus MacLeod. Handcrafted by Piper Pewter on Cape Breton Island.