Shamrock cont...

Jennifer Bryant (formerly J. Moore) J.Bryant at NHM.AC.UK
Tue Apr 10 11:21:11 CDT 2001

>X-Sender: arv at
>Date: Tue, 10 Apr 2001 10:34:07 +0100
>To: jem at
>From: Roy Vickery <R.Vickery at>
>Subject: Shamrock
Please could you forward this to TAXACOM; I'm unable to do so,
>Thanks, R
>>The Oxalis shown is not Oxalis acetosella, which has characteristic white
>flowers, and is less robust than the species depicted.
>>Support for Oxalis acetosella being shamrock is given by J.E. Bicheno, 'On
>the plant intended by the shamrock of Ireland,' Journal of the Royal
>Institution of Great Britain 1: 453-8, 1831.
>>It is possible that the plant originally referred to as shamrock - which
>was edible - was O. acetosella, the leaves and flowers of which were widely
>eaten by children in the British Isles.  But when the custom of wearing
>shamrock on St Patrick's Day developed - it known amongst 'the vulgar' in
>1681 - something more robust, such as Trifolium dubium, was required.
>>Roy Vickery
>>>>Date:         Mon, 9 Apr 2001 10:19:28 -0400
>>>>Reply-To:     "Neill, Amanda" <aneill at NYBG.ORG>
>>>>Sender:       Taxacom Discussion List <TAXACOM at USOBI.ORG>
>>>>From:         "Neill, Amanda" <aneill at NYBG.ORG>
>>>>Subject:      Shamrock
>>>>To:           TAXACOM at USOBI.ORG
>>>>I found a (religious) page with a picture and some of the background
>>>>information on Oxalis acetosella, the Irish shamrock, at
>>>><>.  Also included are some
>>>>fanciful references to Aloe vera, which I'm quite sure is not native to
>>>>Amanda Neill
>>>>Apologies for this naive question: What is shamrock?  I thought that it is
>>>>  Trifolium repens, but my friend insists that it is something else. I
>>>>  know the Irish flora well enough in order to offer her another name.
>>>>  Please, help.
>>>>  Adolf Ceska, Victoria, British Columbia, Canada
>>>Ms Jennifer Bryant (formerly Jenny Moore)
>>>Curator of Algae
>>>Botany Department
>>>The Natural History Museum
>>>Cromwell Road
>>>London, SW7 5BD
>>>Tel.(+44)(0)20 7942 5004
>>>Fax.(+44)(0)20 7942 5529
>>>E-mail. jem at
Ms Jennifer Bryant (formerly Jenny Moore)
Curator of Algae
Botany Department
The Natural History Museum
Cromwell Road
London, SW7 5BD
Tel.(+44)(0)20 7942 5004
Fax.(+44)(0)20 7942 5529
E-mail. jem at

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