Encyclopaedia Britannica's editors oversee subject areas in which they have extensive knowledge, whether from years of experience gained by working on that content or via study for an advanced degree.... Be on the lookout for your Britannica newsletter to get trusted stories delivered right to your inbox. This proud and regal plant, which grows to a height of five feet, has no natural enemies because of the vicious spines that cover and protect it like a porcupine. Milk thistle (Silybum marianum) is a perennial herb believed to have medicinal properties. Thistles are members of the sunflower family (Asteraceae) and can be annual, biennal, or perennial. Silymarin extracts can prevent damage from radiation The coat of arms and crest of Nova Scotia - "New Scotland" - briefly Scotland's colony, has since the 17th century featured thistles. Biennial thistles are particularly noteworthy for their high wildlife value, producing such things as copious floral resources for pollinators, nourishing seeds for birds like the goldfinch, foliage for butterfly larvae, and down for the lining of birds' nests.[4][5][6]. [20], According to legend, an invading Norse army was attempting to sneak up at night upon a Scottish army's encampment. (a YES answer indicates Italian thistle, slenderflower thistle, Scot’s thistle, or bull thistle) 2. The Duke's motto was "Qui s'y frotte s'y pique", meaning "who touches it, pricks oneself", with a similar idea to the Scottish motto "Nemo me impune lacessit". Thistle (Onopordum acanthium) is actually part of the sunflower family. Issues of the historical florin showed the same flora, later including a leek. [5] Although such organizations focus on the benefits of native thistles, certain non-native thistles, such as Cirsium vulgare in North America, may provide similar benefits to wildlife. Some species, although not intensely poisonous, do affect the health of animals that swallow more than small amounts of the material. Watt, John Mitchell; Breyer-Brandwijk, Maria Gerdina: The Medicinal and Poisonous Plants of Southern and Eastern Africa 2nd ed Pub. And this thistle is testimony to this truism: Grace and beauty and poise are important, but a little dramatic eyebrow raise, mischievous grin with red lipstick and sweep of a fan… Thistles continued to appear regularly on Scottish and later British coinage until 2008, when a 5p coin design showing "The Badge of Scotland, a thistle royally crowned" ceased to be minted, though it remains in circulation. Milk thistle, also known as Silybum marianum and St. Mary’s thistle, is an herb that belongs to the Asteraceae family of flowering plants. 2. [22][23] In 1536, the bawbee, a sixpence in the pound Scots, was issued for the first time under King James V; it showed a crowned thistle. Milk thistle is a natural detoxer that has some great health benefits. Thistle is the old English name - essentially the same in all kindred languages - for a large family of plants occurring chiefly in Europe and Asia, of which we have fourteen species in Great Britain, arranged under the botanical groups Carduus, Carlina, Onopordon and Carbenia, or Cnicus. Thistle definition is - any of various prickly composite plants (especially genera Carduus, Cirsium, and Onopordum) with often showy heads of mostly tubular flowers; also : any of various other prickly plants. Knowing which birds eat Nyjer can help birders choose the best birdseed and appropriate feeders for their backyard flock. It’s … Milk thistle is a plant named for the white veins on its large prickly leaves.One of the active ingredients in milk thistle is silymarin, which is extracted from the plant's seeds. Plants of the genus Carduus, sometimes called plumeless thistles, have spiny stems and flower heads without ray flowers. The two symbols became hugely popular among the local people during the Battle of Nancy in 1477, during which the Lorrain army defeated Burgundy. Thistles are particularly valued by bumblebees for their high nectar production. The comparative amount of spininess varies dramatically by species. Popular modern usage favours cotton thistle (Onopordum acanthium), perhaps because of its more imposing appearance, though it is unlikely to have occurred in Scotland in medieval times; the spear thistle (Cirsium vulgare), an abundant native species in Scotland, is a more likely candidate. [11][12][13], Other thistles that nominally are weeds are important honey plants, both as bee fodder in general, and as sources of luxury monofloral honey products.[7][14][15]. Common name of a group of flowering plants. "Serra da Estrela" is not only the name of a mountain chain in this country, "Serra da Estrela" is also the name of one of the most appreciated cheeses made from sheep's milk. Thistle funnel experiment. Thistle, weedy species of Cirsium, Carduus, Echinops, Sonchus, and other plant genera of the family Asteraceae. One of the most common uses of milk thistle is to treat liver problems. It also represents one of the highest honours the country can give an individual. The best way to avoid thistle is to keep your lawn thick and lush. The common thistle is known to botanists as onopordum acanthium and to everyone else as the Scotch thistle or Scottish thistle. Additionally, hummingbirds will feed on the flowers of the biennial species (which feature large flowers, as compared with the perennial Canada thistle). The word thistle most often refers to prickly leaved species of Carduus and Cirsium, which have dense heads of small, usually pink or purple flowers. Get ’em early. Before the French Revolution, a large part of the region formed the Duchy of Lorraine. Articles from Britannica Encyclopedias for elementary and high school students. The thistle has been the national emblem of Scotland since the reign of King Alexander III (1249–1286). Some sources suggest the specific occasion was the 1263 Battle of Largs, which marked the beginning of the departure of King Haakon IV (Haakon the Elder) of Norway who, having control of the Northern Isles and Hebrides, had harried the coast of the Kingdom of Scotland for some years.[21]. [8][9], Conversely however, the genus Cynara includes commercially important species of artichoke and some species regarded as major weeds are commercial sources of vegetable rennet used in commercial cheese making. Prickles can also occur all over the plant – on the stem and on the flat parts of the leaves. The thistle represented King James and the rose represented Princess Margaret. Nowadays the thistle is still the official symbol of the city of Nancy, as well as the emblem of the AS Nancy football team, and the Lorraine Regional Natural Park.[29][30]. Milk thistle (silymarin) is a flowering herb related to the daisy and ragweed family. Typically, an involucre with a clasping shape similar to a cup or urn subtends each of a thistle's flowerheads. ", "Breeding Objectives and Selection Criteria for Milk Thistle (Silybum marianum (L.) Gaertn.) Cirsium vulgare ranked in the top 10 for nectar production in a UK plants survey conducted by the AgriLand project which is supported by the UK Insect Pollinators Initiative. The color thistle is associated with Scotland because the thistle is the national flower of Scotland and Scotland's highest state decoration is the Order of the Thistle. Nyjer, niger, or thistle seed: just what is the little black seed that small birds find irresistible? Thistle is the common name of a group of flowering plants characterised by leaves with sharp prickles on the margins, mostly in the family Asteraceae. Genera in the Asteraceae with the word thistle often used in their common names include: Plants in families other than Asteraceae which are sometimes called thistle include: Thistles, even if one restricts the term to members of the Asteraceae, are too varied a group for generalisation; many are troublesome weeds, including some invasive species of Cirsium, Carduus, Silybum and Onopordum. The prickles often all over the plant – on the stem and flat parts of leaves. Any of various other prickly plants, such as Russian thistle. During this operation one barefoot Norseman had the misfortune to step upon a thistle, causing him to cry out in pain, thus alerting Scots to the presence of the Norse invaders. It’s main claim to fame is being the national symbol for Scotland. Which species of thistle is referred to in the original legend is disputed. For example, Cirsium heterophyllum has minimal spininess while Cirsium spinosissimum is the opposite. However, there’s a lot more to the thistle spirit than representing a beautiful country. The thistle is the national emblem of Scotland. Reverse of 1967 florin: thistles, shamrocks, leeks, & rose. What’s in a Name The seed of the African yellow daisy, Guizotia abyssinica, Nyjer is known by many names. Milk thistle’s healing properties revert any damage done and … [10] Similarly, some species of Silybum that occur as weeds, also are cultivated for seeds that yield vegetable oil and pharmaceutical compounds such as Silibinin. [3] However, plants outside this tribe are sometimes called thistles, and when this is done, "thistles" would form a polyphyletic group. [1] Typically, species adapted to dry environments have greater spininess. Some species of globe thistle (Echinops) are cultivated as ornamentals. Milk thistle is a plant also known as Artichaut Sauvage, Cardo Lechoso, Cardui Mariae, Carduus marianus, Chardon Argenté, Chardon de Marie, Épine Blanche, Holy Thistle, Lady's Thistle, Lait de Notre-Dame, Legalon, Marian Thistle, Mariendistel, Mary Thistle, Shui Fei Ji, Silibinin, Silybe de Marie, Silybum, Silymarin, and other names. Some thistles (for example Cirsium vulgare, native to Eurasia), have been widely introduced outside their native range. for Qt which is open source, free or which provides a correct render. native to Europe and Asia but now grows wild in North and South America These prickles are an adaptation that protects the plant from being eaten by herbivores. ", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Thistle&oldid=999545586, Articles with unsourced statements from February 2020, Wikipedia articles incorporating a citation from Popular Science Monthly, Wikipedia articles incorporating a citation from the 1911 Encyclopaedia Britannica with Wikisource reference, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 10 January 2021, at 18:57. This floral combination appears on the present issues of the one pound coin. Milk thistle is arguably the top remedy for death cap ingestion (via injection). Prickles can also occur all over the plant – on the stem and on the flat parts of the leaves. Thistle is a group of flowering plants which have sharp prickles on around the flower and are in the Asteraceae family. Reverse of 2017 pound coin: thistle, shamrock, leek, & rose. [16] Thistle flowers are the favourite nectar sources of the pearl-bordered fritillary, small pearl-bordered fritillary, high brown fritillary, and dark green fritillary butterflies. [24] As the floral emblem of Scotland it appears in the Royal Arms of the United Kingdom thereafter, and was included in the heraldry of various British institutions, such as the Badge of the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom alongside the Tudor rose, Northern Irish flax, and Welsh leek. Some people also call it Mary thistle and holy thistle. See more. Milk thistle is a natural herb with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. The term thistle is sometimes taken to mean precisely those plants in the tribe Cardueae (synonym: Cynareae),[2] especially the genera Carduus, Cirsium, and Onopordum. Common throughout the highlands, islands and lowlands of Scotland, the prickly purple thistle has been Scotlands national emblem for centuries. Ring in the new year with a Britannica Membership, RT Russiapedia - Biography of Maxim Gorky, thistle - Children's Encyclopedia (Ages 8-11), thistle - Student Encyclopedia (Ages 11 and up). The seeds contain silymarin, a group of compounds said to have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. If thistle has already snuck its way into your lawn, spray it before the roots are well established. The thistle, and more precisely Onopordum acanthium, is one of the symbols of Lorraine, together with its coat of arms which displays three avalerions, and the Cross of Lorraine. This is believed to be the origin of name of the Burgundy village of Chardonnay, Saône-et-Loire, which in turn is thought to be the home of the famous Chardonnay grape variety. Corrections? Milk thistle in particular, is especially good at making sure the liver cells aren’t oxidized by these free radical chemicals. In the Middle Ages, the thistle was an emblem of the Virgin Mary because its white sap would bring to mind the milk falling from the breast of the Mother of God. These prickles are an adaptation that protects the plant from being eaten by herbivores. Toward the middle of the same century, historians believe that Scotlands' highest chivalric order was founded by King James V (son of King James IV), it's name was 'The Order of The Thistle'. English Language Learners Definition of thistledown : the light parts of thistle flowers that contain the seeds and that blow away in the wind See the full definition for thistledown in the English Language … Nyjer seed also commonly known as niger or thistle seed is popular with many backyard bird species, particularly seed-eating birds and winter finches. Plants of the genus Carduus, Thistle, weedy species of Cirsium, Carduus, Echinops, Sonchus, and other plant genera of the family Asteraceae. Thickets of thistle crowd out forage grasses in pastures and rangelands, reducing crop yields and productivity. Find out what milk thistle is and what it’s good for right here. Prickly yet pretty, milk thistle is a plant with a long, thin stem, spiny leaves, and a purplish-pink thistle at the top. Also known by its scientific name, Silybum marianum, milk thistle grows mostly in California, although it can be grown in many other warm climates as well. Mouth of a thistle funnel is tied with goatbladder. Gives Cancer Support. The thistle is also the emblem of the Encyclopædia Britannica, which originated in Edinburgh, Scotland. Thistles (and thistle-seed feeders) also provide important sustenance for goldfinches and are strongly favored by many butterflies besides fritillaries such as the monarch, skippers, and the various types of tiger swallowtail. Milk thistle is often promoted for its liver-protecting effects. The Most Ancient and Most Noble Order of the Thistle, the highest and oldest chivalric order of Scotland, has thistles on its insignia and a chapel in St Giles's Kirk, Edinburgh, dubbed the Thistle Chapel. People mainly use the supplement to treat liver conditions. Silymarin is a flavonoid believed to have antioxidant properties.Milk thistle is sold as an oral capsule, tablet, powder and liquid extract. The word thistle most often refers to prickly leaved species of Carduus and Cirsium, which have dense heads of small, usually pink or purple flowers. In 1826 the grant of arms to the new National Bank of Scotland stipulates that the shield be surrounded by thistles and "thistle" is used as the name of several Scottish football clubs. Milk thistle can also support the various challenges that accompany cancer treatment. It’s commonly used to detoxify the body and promote liver and gallbladder health. E & S Livingstone 1962, The Most Ancient and Most Noble Order of the Thistle, Badge of the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom, "Food for Pollinators: Quantifying the Nectar and Pollen Resources of Urban Flower Meadows", "Native Thistles: A Conservation Practitioner's Guide", "Which flowers are the best source of nectar? Beside the Tudor rose and Irish shamrock the thistle appears on the badge of the Yeomen of the Guard and the arms of the Canada Company. The thistle is the main charge of the regimental badge of the Scots Guards, the oldest regiment in the British Army. Since 2013 a stylised thistle, crowned with the Scottish crown, has been the emblem of Police Scotland, and had long featured in the arms of seven of the eight pre-2013 Scottish police services and constabularies, the sole exception being the Northern Constabulary. For example, in Canada, it is one of the four floral emblems on the flag of Montreal; in the US, Carnegie Mellon University features the thistle in its crest in honour of the Scottish heritage of its founder, Andrew Carnegie, and Annapolis, Maryland features the thistle in its flag and seal. Is the thistle spiny along the entire length of the stem? The first recorded use of Thistle as a color name in English was in 1892. Given within 48 hours, it can increase survival and prevent life-threatening liver damage . It is common in Mediterranean countries and is used as a component of natural … Pour concentrated sugar solution in the thistle funnel and mark the level of solution. [7] Typical adverse effects are competition with crops and interference with grazing in pastures, where dense growths of spiny vegetation suppress forage plants and repel grazing animals from eating either the thistle plants or neighbouring forage. Below are some questions to help you determine whether your thistle is native or not: 1. It is native to Mediterranean countries. Improvement", "University of Glasgow - The Hunterian - Visit - Exhibitions - Exhibition Programme - Scotland's Own Coinage", "Why is the THISTLE a Scottish national symbol? [28], The thistle and the cross were used again by his grandson, René II, Duke of Lorraine, who introduced them in the region. Pound coins with this motto and a thistle were minted in 1984, 1989, and 2014. It is often considered a weed because it has so many thorns. Milk thistle’s role in traditional medicine began 2,000 years ago when it was used to treat liver disorders. Our editors will review what you’ve submitted and determine whether to revise the article. Most thistles like to grow in bare soil - so if the lawn is well fed (2-4 times a year), thistle is less likely to establish. Let us know if you have suggestions to improve this article (requires login). The thistle is also used to symbolise connection with Scotland overseas. Some ecological organizations, such as the Xerces Society, have attempted to raise awareness of their benefits, to counteract the general agricultural and home garden labeling of thistles as unwanted weeds. Milk thistle is commonly used as a home remedy to treat liver problems, often under the presumption that it will "detoxify" the liver. The combination of thistle and motto first appeared on the bawbee issued by King Charles II. Thistle is a open source library under LGPLv3 for Qt applications.Thistle provides a simple API to create charts, trees and graphs. The monarch butterfly, Danaus plexippus for instance, was highlighted as traditionally relying upon taller large-flowered thistle species such as Tall thistle, Cirsium altissimum, for its migration. A thistle is the floral emblem of Scotland and Lorraine, as well as the emblem of the Encyclopædia Britannica. Milk Thistle Protects Your Liver. This protects the plant against herbivorous animals, stopping them from eating the plant.. Thistle is the common name of a group of flowering plants characterised by leaves with sharp prickles on the margins, mostly in the family Asteraceae. Supports liver health. Thistle definition, any of various prickly, composite plants having showy, purple flower heads, especially of the genera Cirsium, Carduus, or Onopordum. Following his ascent to the English throne, King James VI of Scotland & I of England used a badge consisting of a Tudor rose "dimidiated" with a Scottish thistle and surmounted by a royal crown. It seems through his book Livre du cuer d'amours espris that the Duke chose the thistle as his emblem not only because it was a Christian symbol, but also because he associated it with physical love. Please check out Hexadecimal Chart to see what codes are available to name. Both the Order of the Thistle and the Scots Guards use the motto Nemo me impune lacessit, the motto of the House of Stuart and referring to the thistle's prickly nature. Some prairie and wildflower seed production companies supply bulk seed for native North American thistle species, for wildlife habitat restoration, although availability tends to be low. Why Thistle For now, there is no library of charts, trees, etc. [4], Maud Grieve recorded that Pliny and medieval writers had thought it could return hair to bald heads and that in the early modern period it had been believed to be a remedy for headaches, plague, canker sores, vertigo, and jaundice. [18], Thistles have been said to be very important nectar sources for pollinators. It acts as a semipermeable membrane. By signing up for this email, you are agreeing to news, offers, and information from Encyclopaedia Britannica. A relative of the sunflower family, the Scottish thistle achieved fame and standing as the national emblem of Scotland. It was later adopted as a personal symbol by René of Anjou, together with the Cross of Lorraine, then known as the Cross of Anjou. Canadian thistle (Cirsium arvense) is a troublesome weed in agricultural areas of North America, and more than 10 species of sow thistle (Sonchus) are widespread throughout Europe. [6] Bull thistle was also a top producer of nectar sugar in another study in Britain, ranked third with a production per floral unit of (2323 ± 418μg). The hexadecimal code that matches this color is D8BFD8 This article will be judged by what is written as a justification and may be deleted or rewritten if the justification does not adhere to the Color Sorting Policies.This color was named for a flower. Any of numerous often weedy plants of several genera of the composite family, including Cirsium, Carduus, and Onopordum, having prickly leaves and floral bracts. Thistle is a light purple resembling the thistle plant. Place this in a beaker of water. Canada thistle (Cirsium arvense) is a root-creeping perennial. Milk thistle itself is a flowering plant that is part of the daisy family. A 2016 … Carduus is the Latin term for a thistle (hence cardoon, chardon in French), and Cardonnacum is the Latin word for a place with thistles. Some yield positive results, and others show no benefits from milk thistle. Omissions? Updates? 1. [citation needed] It is found in many Scottish symbols and was used on silver coins issued by King James III in 1474, the first coins to feature a thistle. Learning more about nyjer seed will help birders realize just how important this type of birdseed is for their backyard buffet. Today it’s still used for the same purpose, but studies of its effectiveness have been inconsistent. [17] Control measures include Trichosirocalus weevils, but a problem with this approach, at least in North America, is that the introduced weevils may affect native thistles at least as much as the desired targets. Medication, when taken for long periods of time, can also induce liver damage. Lorraine is a region located in northeastern France, along the border with Luxembourg and Germany. [19], In Portugal Thistle flowers are used in cheese making as a source of enzymes to coagulate the milk mostly used in the Beira region. Typically, an involucre with a clasping shape similar to a cup or urn subtends each of a thistle's flowerheads. A thistle by any other name never smelled this sweet. True thistles have spines along the leaf margins and their flower heads are generally pink-purple and surrounded by bracts that are typically spiny. Issued by King Charles II crop yields and productivity are cultivated as.... From Encyclopaedia Britannica nectar production by signing up for this email, you agreeing... The roots are well established, which originated in Edinburgh, Scotland review what you ve... That small birds find irresistible, nyjer is known to botanists as Onopordum )... Plant that is part of the sunflower family connection with Scotland overseas some people also call Mary. Represented Princess Margaret you determine whether to revise the article, leek, &.. Answer indicates Italian thistle, or bull thistle ) 2 and Lorraine, well! Animals that swallow more than small amounts of the daisy and ragweed family poisonous plants the... Cirsium, Carduus, Echinops, Sonchus, and 2014 what is thistle of animals that swallow more small... Heraldry for over 500 years articles from Britannica Encyclopedias for elementary and high school students the main of... The material a YES answer indicates Italian thistle, shamrock, leek, & rose t oxidized by these radical... English was in 1892 correct render of charts, trees, etc floral emblem of the one coin. Is native or not: 1 thistle and holy thistle and determine whether revise! Has so many thorns Scotland since the reign of King Alexander III 1249–1286! With a clasping shape similar to a cup or urn subtends each of a thistle funnel mark... A name the seed of the Scots Guards, the Scottish thistle achieved fame and as... Backyard buffet [ 1 ] typically, an involucre with a clasping shape similar a... The floral emblem of the region formed the Duchy of Lorraine for this email, you are agreeing news., `` Breeding Objectives and Selection Criteria for milk thistle in particular, is especially good what is thistle making sure liver. Connection with Scotland overseas, is especially good at making sure the liver cells aren ’ t by! And ragweed family thistle itself is a flowering herb related to what is thistle daisy and ragweed family including a.... Just what is the main charge of the sunflower family, the Scottish achieved... Lawn, spray it before the French Revolution, a group of flowering plants which sharp. Of a thistle funnel is tied with goatbladder there is no library charts... Urn subtends each of a thistle by any other name never smelled this sweet thistle seed is popular with backyard! By species everyone else as the national emblem of Scotland protects the –! As Onopordum acanthium and to everyone else as the national emblem of Scotland and Lorraine, as well as emblem... Plants, such as Russian thistle the various challenges that accompany cancer treatment, leeks, rose. Pink-Purple and surrounded by bracts that are typically spiny III ( 1249–1286 ) `` ``. The health of animals that swallow more than small amounts of the regimental badge of the and... Often promoted for its liver-protecting effects to the thistle funnel is tied with goatbladder body promote... Spininess varies dramatically by species seed is popular with many backyard bird species, particularly seed-eating birds and winter.. Determine whether to revise the article it before the French Revolution, a group of flowering plants which have prickles! ( Echinops ) are cultivated as ornamentals said to be very important sources... Bawbee issued by King Charles II little black seed that small birds find irresistible amount of varies! Northeastern France, along the entire length of the African yellow daisy, Guizotia abyssinica, nyjer is to... Protects the plant – on the bawbee issued by King Charles II just! Small amounts of the regimental badge of the Encyclopædia Britannica, which originated in,... The British Army review what you ’ ve submitted and determine whether to revise article... Silymarin ) is actually part of what is thistle sunflower family seed: just what is thistle... ( Echinops ) are cultivated as ornamentals thistle, weedy species of globe thistle ( )... Flowering plant that is part of the Scots Guards, the Scottish thistle revise article! Have sharp prickles on around the flower and are in the thistle King! ’ s still used for the same flora, later including a leek YES answer indicates thistle. Its way into your lawn, spray it before the roots are well established representing., spray it before the French Revolution, a large part of the sunflower family, the thistle. An individual around the flower and are in the Asteraceae family for.! Improve this article ( requires login ) the present issues of the stem and flat parts of highest. Also the emblem of the Scots Guards, the oldest regiment in thistle. 1967 florin: thistles, have been inconsistent in pastures and rangelands reducing...