Yew -

Hageneder, Fred

Published by Reaktion Books
ISBN 10: 178023189X / ISBN 13: 9781780231891
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Synopsis:  The yew is the oldest and most common tree in the world, but it is a plant of puzzling contradictions: it is a conifer with juicy scarlet berries, but no cones; deer can feast on its poisonous foliage, but it is lethal to farm animals; and it thrives where other plants cannot because of its extraordinarily low rate of photosynthesis. Exploring this paradoxical plant in Yew, Fred Hageneder surveys its position in religious and cultural history, its role in the creation of the British Empire, and its place in modern medicine. Hageneder explains the way the yew is able to renew itself from the inside by producing interior roots and how early humans, fascinated with its regenerative powers, began to associate the tree with concepts of life and death, the afterlife, and eternity. As such, it can be found at the sacred sites of Native Americans, Buddhists, and Shinto shrines in Japan, and it has become a living symbol of the resurrection for the Christian faith. He describes how churchyards saved many yews during the Middle Ages, when the trees were used for the mass production of the longbow, which laid the foundation for the British Empire. Finally, he discusses the latest scientific discoveries about the yew, including its use in cancer treatments. A comprehensive and richly illustrated history, Yew will appeal to botanists and other readers interested in the history and symbolism of the natural world.

About the Author:  Fred Hageneder is the author of many books on the natural and cultural history of trees, including Yew—A History. He lives in the Cotswolds, UK.

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Title: Yew -
Publisher: Reaktion Books
Book Condition: BRAND NEW

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Book Description Reaktion Books, United Kingdom, 2013. Hardback. Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Botanists around the world marvel at the unique characteristics of the yew, Europe s most ancient species of tree. It is a conifer without resin or cones but with juicy scarlet fruits that feed many birds and animals; it has foliage that is poisonous to livestock but which wild animals can eat; and though it has an extraordinarily low rate of photosynthesis, it can grow where other tree seedlings and plants just wither and die. The yew s lower branches can root themselves, and it can also produce interior roots inside a hollowing trunk, renewing itself from the inside out. It was in the Palaeolithic Era that humans were first struck by the yew s regenerative powers and began to associate it with concepts of life and death, the afterlife and eternity. Yew trees can be found at the sacred sites of Native Americans and Buddhists, and Shinto shrines in Japan, as well as in Christian churchyards, where they became a symbol of the Resurrection. During the Middle Ages, these churchyards provided a safe haven for many yew trees while those in the wild were felled for the mass production of the longbow, a powerful weapon which enabled England to rise and ultimately laid the foundation for the British Empire - at the expense of almost the entire yew population of Europe. This comprehensive, richly illustrated cultural and natural history includes the latest scientific discoveries about this remarkable tree. The book will appeal to botanists and the general reader, as well as anyone interested in the history and symbolism of the natural world. Seller Inventory # AA99781780231891

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Fred Hageneder
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Book Description Reaktion Books, United Kingdom, 2013. Hardback. Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Botanists around the world marvel at the unique characteristics of the yew, Europe s most ancient species of tree. It is a conifer without resin or cones but with juicy scarlet fruits that feed many birds and animals; it has foliage that is poisonous to livestock but which wild animals can eat; and though it has an extraordinarily low rate of photosynthesis, it can grow where other tree seedlings and plants just wither and die. The yew s lower branches can root themselves, and it can also produce interior roots inside a hollowing trunk, renewing itself from the inside out. It was in the Palaeolithic Era that humans were first struck by the yew s regenerative powers and began to associate it with concepts of life and death, the afterlife and eternity. Yew trees can be found at the sacred sites of Native Americans and Buddhists, and Shinto shrines in Japan, as well as in Christian churchyards, where they became a symbol of the Resurrection. During the Middle Ages, these churchyards provided a safe haven for many yew trees while those in the wild were felled for the mass production of the longbow, a powerful weapon which enabled England to rise and ultimately laid the foundation for the British Empire - at the expense of almost the entire yew population of Europe. This comprehensive, richly illustrated cultural and natural history includes the latest scientific discoveries about this remarkable tree. The book will appeal to botanists and the general reader, as well as anyone interested in the history and symbolism of the natural world. Seller Inventory # AA99781780231891

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