Rosmarinus officinalis (Lamiaceae)

Rosmarinus officinalis (Lamiaceae)

  • Plant

Rosemary, Rosmarinus officinalis, is a woody, perennial herb with fragrant, evergreen, needle-like leaves and white, pink, purple or blue flowers, native to the Mediterranean region. Rosemary can withstand droughts, surviving a severe lack of water for lengthy periods.

  • Mythology

The name derives from the Latin words ros marinus, which translate as dew of the sea. According to legend, it was draped around the Greek goddess Aphrodite when she rose from the sea, born of Ouranos's semen.

  • Ethnopharmacology 

Rosemary has a very old reputation for improving memory and has been used as a symbol for remembrance during weddings, war commemorations and funerals in Europe and Australia. The powder from leaves of rosemary heals wounds. It lifts the mood and is useful in cases of depression of mild to moderately severe. The rosemary was used in the past for flavor and preservaton of wine.

  • Active constituents

The main constituent of rosemary essential oil is 1,8-cineole and in smaller proportions α-pinene, β-pinene, camphor and others. The non-volatile polar constituents such as flavonoids and phenolic compounds are biologically active anti-oxidants. Some of them are rosmarinic acid, caffeic acid,rutin, vanillic acid and others.

1,8-cineole                                                           rosmarinic acid