Eichenau  Peppermint Museum

Links to other sites

Minthe at Wikipedia

Peppermint in Mythology

Name and origin of the mint are described in Greek mythology (although this myth is probably an invention of the hellenistic period): Minthe was the daughter of the river god Cocytos. Hades, the god of the underworld, fell in love with her and therewith made the goddess Persephone angry; she killed Minthe and dismembered her. Hades scattered her remains, from which mints grew up on a sunny hill to the east of Pylos in Messinia.

Thousands of years ago, the peppermint was already so favoured and honoured, that it was added to the pyramid tombs of pharaohs in Egypt - as a protecting herb for the journey to kingdom come.

Greeks and Romans bespreaded the floor with mint during festivities in order to stimulate the appetite of the guests. The Latin writer Plinius (24-79 AD) tells us, that Greeks and Romans wore mint wreaths during carousals to prevent a hangover. Furthermore, they are said to have rubbed the tables with mint to stimulate carnal desire. Rooting out the herb was regarded as a sacrilege and brought misfortune.

For oriental sovereigns, the mint served as an enclosure in their scrolls to signify friendship and love.

It is handed down from ancient seafaring men that they used peppermint and ginger against sea sickness. Furthermore, they used it to keep the drinking water on board fresh.

The earliest exemplar of the "Peppermint" can be found in the British Museum in London. It was discovered by the natural scientist Johan Ray in Herfordshire in 1696.

Sed si quis vires spesicque et nomina mentae
Ad plenum memorare potest, sciat ille necesse est,
Aut quod Eritreo volitent in gurgite pisces,
Lemnius aut altum quot in aera Mulcifer ire
Scintillas vastis videat fornacibus Aetna.

(Walafried Strabo, abbot of the Benedictine monastery
Reichenau, 808-849 AD)