Devil's milk is a term that is used to refer to several different plants, all of which have acrid milky juice. One of these plants is the spurge, specifically the Euphorbia peplus and Euphorbia helioscopia. Another plant associated with devil's milk is the celandine. These plants have a reputation for their potent and sometimes dangerous juice, which is believed to have curative powers in folklore.
The juice of the devil's milk plant, when applied to certain skin conditions such as warts, is said to have the ability to cure them. This belief in the curative power of devil's milk juice has been passed down through generations in folklore. The juice is often applied directly to the affected area, and it is believed that it can cause the wart to disappear or heal.
In addition to its reputed curative powers, devil's milk juice is also believed to possess other remarkable attributes. These attributes may vary depending on the specific folklore and cultural beliefs surrounding the plant. For example, some folklore suggests that devil's milk juice can ward off evil spirits or protect against witchcraft.
It is important to note that the term “devil's milk” is not a scientific or botanical term, but rather a colloquial term used in folklore. The plants associated with devil's milk are part of the Euphorbiaceae family, which includes a wide variety of species with milky sap. The term “devil's milk” is likely derived from the toxic and potentially harmful nature of the plants' sap, which can cause skin irritation and other adverse reactions if handled improperly.
In my personal experience as a sommelier and brewer, I have encountered various plants with milky sap, including some spurge species. While I have not specifically worked with devil's milk plants, I have come across similar plants in my research and studies. The use of plant extracts and juices in traditional medicine and folklore is a fascinating aspect of cultural beliefs and practices.
To summarize, devil's milk refers to several plants with acrid milky juice, such as spurge and celandine. The juice of these plants is believed to have curative powers and other remarkable attributes in folklore. While the scientific validity of these beliefs may be questionable, the cultural significance and historical use of devil's milk plants cannot be ignored.