Saturday, November 19, 2005


Near Glen Alps, Chugach State Park, just outside Anchorage, Alaska. 19 Jul 2003.

This is Aconitum delphinifolium, a species native to Alaska. There are numerous monkshood species around the world. Also known as wolfsbane, monkshood is deadly poisonous — full of the alkaloid aconitine — & from ancient times has commonly been rubbed on spear tips & arrow tips for use in hunting or war. The name of the alkaloid comes from the same Latin root as its genus name Aconitum.
No, no, go not to Lethe, neither twist
Wolf's-bane, tight-rooted, for its poisonous wine....

— John Keats, "Ode on Melancholy"

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