Boudicca’s Secret: Stinging Nettle

Don’t be fooled by the name, Stinging Nettle holds a wealth of health benefits and has its roots in magic and mystery. From a detoxifying elixir to a potent witchcraft herb, the secrets of the humble plant are a fascinating as they are versatile. Traditionally, nettle has been associated with protection, healing, and cleansing, and it has been used in herbalism as far back as the Bronze Age.

Have you ever heard of Queen Boudicca? She was a fierce and courageous woman – the warrior queen of the Iceni people. With her flowing red hair and piercing eyes, she sparked a rebellion against the Roman Empire. She would have her warriors use nettle as part of their preparation for battle. They would whip their bodies with nettles to increase their adrenaline. The stinging sensation invigorated them, making them more fearless and ferocious in combat. With her unyielding determination, Boudicca embodied the very essence of the nettle: tenacity, courage, and unwavering spirit. 

The mystery and mythology of nettle doesn’t end there though – it’s also associated with Thor and Loki (Loki’s fishing net was made of nettle), and in Celtic lore, a dense patch of nettle means there are fae nearby. 

So, how can you use nettle in witchcraft today? It’s first and foremost a protective herb, so you can add it to any spell jars or sachets intended to protect. It’s also a great hex- and curse-breaker, simply burn it in your cauldron as an incense and let it purify and cleanse you. You can also use it to attract prosperity. Place some dried nettle in a round bowl near your front door or in a prominent place in the home for financial flow and blessings. Lastly, you can make some nettle tea to promote vitality.

So don’t let the name intimidate you – Stinging Nettle is a great ally in witchwork.

Jenna is a pagan and lifelong student of history. She's the potion expert at High Priestess, and also designs tarot decks, oracle decks, and powerful ritual oils.