Photo credit for Game of Thrones: HBO
If you’re a Game of Thrones fan, you may have noticed the Seven Kingdoms lacks an apothecary…
Four years ago (when we were only in season 3 of Game of Thrones), my husband and I scoured the internet, sure there was some mistake: Asheville, North Carolina must have an herbal apothecary, right?
Four years later, Herbiary has become an Asheville institution and we’re setting our sights on what’s next. Maybe the Seven Kingdoms? We’ve been scouring Game of Thrones episodes and, as of yet, haven’t seen a single herb shop in all of Westeros.
The country’s obviously in need…so we had a bit of fun doing exactly what we can’t do here in the U.S.: diagnosing and treating the despotic, eerily psychic, and seriously sociopathic crew from Game of Thrones.
(Spoiler Alert: if you’re not up to date on the episodes, you may read something here you don’t want to know!)
Herbalist Seven Song (out of Ithaca, New York) came into our shop last year and asked if we had a cure for chronic sarcasm. Perhaps a healthy dose of love my (sarcastic) husband suggested. Love obviously didn’t cure Tyrion, who snarked through his love affair with Shae and remained rightfully cynical after she tried to murder him. While we don’t have a remedy for his sharp tongue, we’re voting for milk thistle seed, burdock and dandelion roots for his pickled liver.
Resurrection’s hard on a body, not to mention a soul. Tincture of reishi, 3 times a day, to ease the soul back into the skin. Mimosa for the broody and dour. Milky oat because his job’s not getting any less stressful any time soon.
Bran Stark (aka the Three Eyed Raven)
While Jon got his soul stuffed back into his body, we’re wondering did Bran get his soul sucked out? Has he become the Three Eyed Raven or has Bran disappeared entirely, ceding his body to the ancient Raven’s soul? Whatever it is, winter’s got into his bones: the boy has a serious case of Seasonal Affective Disorder and his depressiac tendencies are straining the family reunion. Vitamin D, fish oil, St. John’s wort (a plant that flowers at Summer Solstice and is so needed by Winter Solstice) and eyebright drops to keep that three-eyed vision clear.
If Cersei wasn’t scary as all get out, I’d pull her aside and pass her a packet of shatavari. “Shatavari” translates to “woman with a thousand husbands.” It helped me through the worst of peri-menopause. I doubt it has any effect on sociopaths, but it might take the edge off the mood swings…and perhaps sex with 999 other men (men who don’t come from the same womb) would satisfy her need for conquest.G of T Prescriptions: Shatavari—woman with 1,000 husbands—to channel Cersei's need for conquest. Click To Tweet
Can anyone say OCD with a side of multiple personality disorder?
- obsessive thinking, repetitive thought patterns and urges that are difficult to ignore: CHECK
- feelings of aggression and vengeance: CHECK
- excessive adoption of other people’s faces and personalities: CHECK
This is a tough one given the deep-seated childhood trauma (although in the Seven Kingdoms that seems de rigueur) and the intentional dissembling of her own identity. Still a bit of Holly Flower Essence might ease the intense need for revenge, Passion Flower for the repetitive thoughts, and Rhodiola to get those cortisol levels in check.
As if this isn’t enough for A Girl to deal with, Arya’s recent rejection by Nymeria, her dire wolf, has left her heart-achy and clearly in need of rose petal elixir. In fact, Arya should make Rose her new BFF: Rose Hip Seed Oil would work wonders for her face—pulling off all those gooey second-skins can cause early age lines.G of T Prescriptions: After rejection by Nymeria, 'A Girl' needs rose petal elixir. Click To Tweet
In every episode Daenrys adds a title, and Missandei’s privilege is to remember them all:
Daenrys Targaryen, Queen of the Andals, the Rhoynar and the First Men, Protector of the Realm, Queen of Meereen, Khaleesi of the Great Grass Sea, Mother of Dragons, The Unburnt, Breaker of Chains, Princess of Dragonstone…
Whatever will she add this week? Empress of The North? Conqueror of the White Walkers? Stunned-Second-Seat to Jon Snow?
Whatever the effluvience, Missandei will have to add it to her next recitation of Daenrys’s dragon-sized name. Sniffing rosemary essential oil has been shown in studies to increase retention and, at the rate this list is growing, I’m thinking rosemary and gotu kola tincture, internally, as well.
Finally, Samwell Tarly…
…who isn’t gonna survive ’til Maesterdom if he doesn’t stop exposing himself to gray scale. Astragalus for his immune system and Good Samaritan oil as a disinfectant. Plus that puking montage screams for ginger chews and chamomile tea.
Oh, and The Hound?
Helichrysum essential oil will work wonders for that scarring.
Your turn: step behind the apothecary counter and tell me what you’d dose your favorite characters with?
(And next week we’ll be back to our regularly-scheduled programming!)
Welcome! My name’s Maia Toll, registered herbalist with The American Herbalists Guild. I own two herb stores—one in Philadelphia, one in Asheville—and an online shop at www.herbiary.com. I spent a year in Ireland studying with a traditional medicine woman and have taught everywhere from the jungles of Peru to the University of Pennsylvania.
My first book is due out July 2018 (Storey Press). In the meantime, I love helping my author friends pick just the right herbal medicines for their characters to use. People are always asking what they should take for themselves:
When it come to botanical medicines and essential oils: knowledge is power, people… And that means taking the time to study and experiment, not simply latching onto the latest internet fad. Read more here.