Letter: Io (Ph)

Forfeda Flash Card – Vicky Newton

When Iphin appears in readings it highlights our sense of grief and or remorse for his previous situations have played out and suggests that this may be clouding our judgment in the here and now. Our ability to view things intellectually can be hindered by our emotions and there is a danger in allowing our heart to rule our head. The process of dealing with, and releasing, your grief will bring resolution to the situation at hand. This might be through mended and renewed relationships to the release of creative and transformative forces that can be used to change you for the better. The key message of Iphin is that in order to grow you must step outside of your comfort zone and find the place where it you are able to meet your own needs whilst respecting the needs of others.


Scientific Name: Ribes uva-crispa
Family: Grossulariaceae
Origin: unclear
Habitat: Urban and agricultural settings including hedgerows

Wildly cultivated for its fruit the Gooseberry can also be found in the hedgerows and mixed Woodlands of the British Isles. It is not clear if the plant is native to the UK or was introduced in times past but as it appears well settled in countryside without out-competing other species it is certainly comfortable here.

Leaves are rounded with three to give lobes with flowers appearing as a creamy white bell. The wood is dark in colour and often covered in protective spines which not only protect its seasonal fruit but make an excellent boundary plant.

The best way to identify gooseberry is during the fruiting season as it is hard to mistake it for anything else during this time. Fruit appears between June and August and can range in colour from tart green all the way through to red and purple. They usually have a light covering of hair over their outer skin, though they can develop in to full-fledged spines in larger fruit.

Gooseberry © GLady

Magical Correspondence

Planet: Venus
Gender: Feminine
Themes: transformation, change, releasing grief and grievances
Deities: Brigidh, Arianrhod
Sabbat: Beltane

Magical Uses

Iphin Iphin Iphin
Iii F-in Iii F-in Iii F-in
Iiiiii F-in F-in F-in
Iphin Iphin Iphin

Suggested Galdur

Incorporate dried fruit in to healing charms or spells to increase a woman’s fertility.

Gooseberries make a good food offering to deity, particularly Goddesses.

Make a jar of sweet gooseberry jam or jelly as a peace offering to someone who is upset with you. 

Mythology and Literature

There is little regarding gooseberry in folktales and lore but there are a number of things we can derive from its traditional healing uses. Its use as a way of treating women recovering from childbirth and complicated menstrual problems has lead it to be associated with goddesses concerned with fertility and childbirth, particularly Arianrhod and Brigid when considering Celtic pantheons.

 The Ogham Tract refers to Gooseberry as “the sweetest of woods” and “most wonderful of tastes”. It has variously been associated with the fae and with ancient shamanic practices, depending on your research source.

Quiet woods was our haunt
Below the gooseberry bushes
Where we found out we were in love
Gooseberry picking our pretense
from prying, eyebrow-lifting parents
Whose disappointment and disapproval would have killed us.
Dappled light shone on our first tentative kiss
Giggles echoed along the corridor of tree trunks
We touched thin, undeveloped bodies tenderly, shyly.
Prohibited love, we were both just fifteen
On hugging our long curls interlocked, yours blonde, mine mousy brown
Our lip gloss; yours bright red, mine pink, joined like glue.
Best friends became lovers in the silent woods
There was nothing wrong with our love
Yet we hid it for so long.
We carried gooseberries in our hoods on the way home.

Gooseberry Picking by Della Perry

Sources and Further Reading

Mileage may vary. The Forfeda are a later addition to the ogham alphabet which are sometimes including in divination sets. There is a diversity of names and meanings ascribed to the symbols of the forfeda and what is offered here is my own interpretation. Please take the information provided here in conjunction with other sources of information.

Tales Unfold – Forfeda
Magick and the Green Dragon
Living Library Introduction to the Forfeda
Living Library Iphin
Learn Religions
Writing with Tarot
Sentiment Metaphysics
Wildfood UK

Author: knotmagick

Weaving Magick and Crochet in the madhouse I call home. I am a devotee of Hekate and a follower of Pan.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


Reflections Concerning Art, Nature, and the Affairs of Humankind (also some gardening anecdotes)

Will Pooley


Mumma Troll’s Patch

Finding magic in life

Seven Metals Tarot

Divinitory readings

Hugh Fox III

Asian Union Futurist


The true roots of Europe

The Delightful Mrs P

Myth, Magic and the Mundane...

Valarie Wright

§cholar & §eer . Åuthor & Årtist . §ophis & §eiðu


The Former Home of South Leeds Archaeology

Syncretic Mystic

applications open for a new tagline

Vigdisdotter's Mystical Musings

AKA Erin's Blog: All are welcome, sanity is optional

Laetitia Latham Jones

Wisewoman, Old Craft Practitioner

The Goddess Cavern

A Place Where Learning and Magick Meet

Dave Witt

a collection of hobbies and interests, those being mountaineering, general outdoors, bushcraft and leathercraft, an amateur at all of them, but, great fun all the same

%d bloggers like this: