I wonder if you knew …..

Why there are so many Yew trees in British churchyards.

Why are there yew trees in so many British graveyards?
They are probably the most common tree found in them. You might have heard stories that yew trees were planted near churches as a safe source of wood to make English longbows, or that they deterred cattle from disturbing burial grounds, or were echoes of a pagan past.
Actually, the yew tree has been associated with death and the journey of the soul from this life to the next for thousands of years. It was sacred to Hecate, Ancient Greek Goddess of Death, Witchcraft and Necromancy, and was said to purify the dead as they entered the underworld of Hades. Celtic druids also saw yew as sacred and planted it close to their temples to use in death rituals.
Many of these temples were adopted by the early Christian church and so the churchyard yew was inherited. Being a symbol of death, but very much alive, it came to represent eternity and is sometimes linked with the Tree of Life, which features in many religious beliefs and philosophies.

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