Valerian at Weskeag Marsh
Valerian has been used as a medicinal herb since at least the time of ancient Greece and Rome. Hippocrates described its properties, and Galen later prescribed it as a remedy for insomnia. In medieval Sweden, it was sometimes placed in the wedding clothes of the groom to ward off the "envy" of the elves. In the sixteenth century the Anabaptist reformer Pilgram Marpeck prescribed valerian tea for a sick woman.