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in ancient Rome

Recommended by Pliny for making chaplets(1), Amaranth, Amaranthus hypochondriacus (LINN.), sacred to Ephesian Artemis in ancient Greece, was believed to have special healing properties and was used as s symbol of immortality in decorating images of the gods and tombs.(2)

It is important to remember that only the new world species developed the heavy seed yields of a grain crop. The edible Old World species were used as potherbs.(3)

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footnotes & bibliography

(1) Farrar, Linda Farrar; Ancient Roman Gardens; Sutton; 1998; p206

(2)Amaranths at A Modern Herbal; Mrs. M. Grieve; 1931;

(3)PLB143-Crop of the day: Amaranth; The Asian amaranths