(Atropa belladonna) Poison
Folk Names: Banewort, Black Cherry, Deadly
Nightshade, Death’s Herb, Devil’s Cherries,
Divale, Dwale, Dwaleberry, Dwayberry,
Fair Lady, Great Morel, Naughty Man’s
Cherries, Sorcerer’s Berry, Witch’s Berry
Deities: Hecate, Bellona, Circe
Ritual Uses: The priests of Bellona, according
to ancient tradition, drank an infusion
of belladonna prior to worshipping
Her and invoking Her aid. Bellona is the
Roman Goddess of war.
Magical Uses: Today belladonna is little-used
in herb magic due to its high toxicity—all
parts of the plant are extremely poisonous
and there are still reports of death resulting
from accidental ingestion of nightshade.
In the past it was used to encourage
astral protection and to produce visions,
but safer alternatives are available today
and belladonna is best avoided.