Artichoke-FOR Erasmus+ project

Collaborative dictionary of mythological plants

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Antigoni Christakakou

Giuliana Russo
Oihane Lopez

Scientific name: Cynara scolymus

Family: Compositae

Genus: Cynara

Species: C. scolymus

Vulgar name:

English: Artichoke

Spanish: Alcachofa

Basque: Alkatxofa

Italian: Carciofo

Greek: Αγκινάρα

Morphological description

Globe artichoke is a variety of a species cultivated as a food.The Artichokes earliest cultivation occurred in the Mediterranean. This vegetable grows to 1.4–2 m tall and it has green leaves 50–82 cm long. The flowers develop in a large head from an edible bud about 8–15 cm diameter with numerous triangular scales; the individual florets are purple.

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Uses, threats and singularity


Indigestion: Artichoke leaf extract seems to reduce symptoms such as vomiting and stomach pain in people with indigestion.

High cholesterol: Taking a specific artichoke extract seems good to reduce total and low-density of cholesterol after 6 to 12 weeks of treatment. Studies using cynarin, a specific substance found in artichoke, have shown conflicting results. Drinking frozen artichoke juice doesn't seem to low cholesterol levels and may increase levels of blood.

Scientifics have research that a specific artichoke leaf product improves the flow of bile from the liver. Artichoke, reduces abdominal pain and cramping, gas, and constipation after 6 weeks of treatment.

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An account is given of the current viruses that infect globe artichoke and the diseases they cause. Most of the 23 viruses found in these crops were recorded from Europe and the Mediterranean Basin, where they constitute serious threats to the artichoke industry.

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This vegetable grows to 1.4–2 m tall.

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Story love - Zeus and Cynara

A Greek myth evokes the lovely story that the first artichoke was a woman that lives in the island of Zinari, her surpassing beauty named Cynara with whom Zeus was enamored. Zeus decided to make her a goddess but Cynara missed her home and she would went back to earth from Mount Olympus to visit her family. This infuriated Zeus, who decided to become her into the first artichoke.

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Symbolism of the vegetable

The Artichoke, represents hope for a prosperous future.
The center of the artichoke is called the "Heart" so it also means hope for future love.

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Jupiter and artichokes

Jupiter was a God that belongs to Roman mythology , was the protector of Rome. Ruler of the gods , God of heaven and King of the firmament; Jupiter was the god of rain and thunder. His lover was the nymph Thetis . One of the bad things he had, was his promiscuity and his amorous conquests , transformed into animals like swans , bulls and birds , he usually did that to show his glory .