The Philosophy of Natural Magic, by Henry Cornelius Agrippa, L. W. de Laurence ed. , at sacred-texts.com
Saturnine things, amongst Elements, are earth and also water; amongst humors, black choler that is moist, as well natural as adventitious (adust choler excepted). Amongst tastes, sour, tart, and dead-like. Amongst metals, lead, and gold, by reason of its weight, and the golden marcasite. Amongst stones, the onyx, the ziazza, the camonious, the sapphire, the brown jasper, the chalcedon, the loadstone, and all dark, weighty, earthy things. Amongst plants and trees, the daffodil, dragon's-wort, rue, cummin, hellebore, the tree from whence benzoin comes, mandrake, opium, and those things which are never sown,
and never bear fruit, and those which bring forth berries of a dark color and black fruit, as the black fig-tree, the pine-tree, the cypress-tree, and a certain tree used at burials, which never springs afresh with berries, rough, of a bitter taste, of a strong smell, of a black shadow, yielding a most sharp pitch, bearing a most unprofitable fruit, never dies with age, deadly, and dedicated to Pluto. As is the herb pas-flower, * with which they were wont, anciently, to
strow the graves before they put the dead bodies into them; wherefore it was lawful to make their garlands at feasts with all herbs and flowers besides pas-flowers, because it was mournful and not conducing to mirth. Also all creeping animals, living apart, and solitary, nightly, sad, contemplative, dull, covetous, fearful, melancholy, that take much pains, slow, that feed grossly, and such as eat their young. Of these kinds, therefore, are the mole, the wolf, the ass, the toad, the cat, the hog, the bear, the camel, the basilisk, the hare, the ape, the dragon, the mule, all serpents and creeping things, scorpions, ants, and such things as proceed from putrefaction in the earth, in water, or in the ruins of houses, as mice and many sorts of vermin. 'Amongst birds, those are Saturnine which have long necks and harsh voices, as
cranes, ostriches, and peacocks, which are dedicated to Saturn and Juno. Also the screech-owl, the horned-owl, the bat, the lapwing, the crow, the quail, which is the most envious bird of all. Amongst fishes, the eel, living apart from all other fish; the lamprey, the dog-fish, which devours her young; also the tortoise, oysters, cockles, to which may be added sea-sponges and all such things as come of them.
102:* Pas, from the Latin word "passus," meaning step, pace, or "right of going foremost; precedence." Thus the pas-flower means a plant blooming ahead of other flowers. A co-ordinate word is "pascha," meaning to "pass over," giving the name "Passover," or the feast of Easter. "Pasch" comes from and means the same as "pascha," and we read of the "pasch" egg, stained and given to children at Easter, as also of the "pasch" flower of Easter. The Easter flower was also known as the Pash-flower, Paschal-flower, and Pasque-flower—"pash" and "pasque" meaning Easter, and "paschal" pertaining thereto. This indicates that the pas-flower in the above text is identical with the pasque-flower, of the genus Anemone, having large purple flowers, which usually bloom about Easter, stepping foremost in their- order of blooming as regarding other flowers. Agrippa also makes mention here of the pas-flower as being an emblem of mourning as the ancients used it to "strow the graves before they put the dead bodies into them." While the ancients may have held the pas-flower as sacred to the rites of burial, the sense of its use as the Easter flower would indicate that it was also used as an emblem of great joy, and signified a new life for the departed through a new birth or resurrection. A true understanding of the meaning of the feast of the Passover or Easter will show this: Easter-day is always the first Sunday after the fourteenth day of the calendar moon which comes upon or next after the 21st of March; so that if the fourteenth day comes on a Sunday, Easter-day will be the Sunday after. Easter corresponds to the Passover of the Jews, and "most nations still give it this name under the various forms of pascha, pasque, paque, or pask." The feast of the Passover was instituted by the Jews "to commemorate the providential escape of the Hebrews, in Egypt, when God, smiting the first-born of the Egyptians, passed over the houses of the Israelites, which were marked with the blood of the paschal lamb." With the Christian church it is observed to commemorate the "resurrection of Christ." The Old High Germans celebrated the day in honor of Ostara, the goddess of light or spring, whence they called April (the month of or following Easter) Ostarmanoth. The Anglo-Saxons called the same month, Eastermonadh, from Eastre, their name for the same goddess, and their paschal feast, Eastran or Easter. March was named from Mars, the god of war, and was originally the first month of the year as it was in March that the Sun came to Aries, the first House of the Zodiac, emblemized by the lamb, as the ram was the first animal to forage for food and procreate; and the Sun entering p. 103 the first House was the vernal equinox, or the first day of spring, the first season of the fruitful year, and therefore March, being the advent month of light and fecundity, was esteemed as the first month of the year. The first full month of light and spring, when every fetter of winter was riven and spring was opened wide and fixed, was April, from aperio, to open; and also from the Greek word, aphros—foam—from which Venus was said to have sprung, and hence this month was sacred to her; no doubt Ostara and Eastre were identical with her. As Easter-day falls the first Sunday after the fourteenth day of the calendar moon which comes upon or next after the 21st of March, Easter-day usually comes in April and dates its arrival from the aspect of the Moon to the arbitrary date of March 21. This is a very significant fact and is fully confirmed as such when we find that the 21st of March is the usually precise date when the Earth, in its annual movement around the Sun, enters Libra, causing the Sun to apparently enter the opposite House or Sign of Aries, ending winter and ushering in spring, for the first day of spring always comes when the Sun enters Aries. Aries is the House of the lamb, and with the birth of spring the lamb is resurrected or brought to life anew, while winter is dead, the Sun having passed over the meridian line between winter and spring. Further, the word Easter corresponds with Aries, for it springs from the word East, and Aries is the Eastern part of the Zodiac. Therefore, March 21st is the true Eastern-day, but the celebration of the return of spring is fitly deferred until the first Sun-day after about a lunar cycle, so as to partake of the first fruits of the spring season. In view of the foregoing, therefore, the ancients used the pas-flower at the grave as an emblem of the passing over of the winter of old age and the resurrection of the spirit to eternal light and immortal youth. lased as such the pas-flower or pasque-flower typified joy and hope.