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OE wyrtig, adj: Garden-like, full of plants;
On anum wyrtige hamme, Homl. Skt. ii. 30:312




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Wyrtig cerbot, a field blessing

June, Salzburg calendar


cerbot, a Field Blessing

The Aecerbot, or "field blessing," which dates to the 11th century, can be found in British Library MS Cotton Caligula, A. VII. It is a lengthy ceremony employed to bring a barren field back to fertility.


Field Blessing

Her ys seo bot, hu u meaht ine ceras betan gif hi nella wel wexan oe r hwilc ungedefe ing on gedon bi on dry oe on lyblace

Here is the remedy, how you may better your fields if they do not grow well, or if any unhealthy thing has been done to them by sorcery or by poison.

Genim onne on niht, r hyt dagige, feower tyrf on feower healfa s landes 7gemearca hu hy r stodon. Nim onne ele 7 hunig 7 beorman 7 lces feos meolc e on m lande sy 7 lces treowcynnes dl e on m lande sy gewexen, butan heardan beaman 7 lcre nam cure wyrte dl butan glappan anon 7 do onne haligwter r on 7 drype onne riwa on one staol ara turfa 7 cwee onne as word:

Take then at night, before it is dawn, four sods from the four parts of your land, and mark where they were before. Then take oil and honey and yeast, and milk from each cow that is on the land, and a piece of each kind of tree grown on the land, except hornbeam, and a piece of each named herb except only the buckbean, and add then holy water and drip it then three times on the bottom of the sods, and say then these words:

Crescite, wexe et multiplicamini 7 gemnigfealda et replete 7 gefylle terre as eoran In nomine patris et filii et spiritus sancti sit benedicti


7 Pater Noster swa oft swa t oer


7 bere sian a turf to circean 7 mssepreost asinge feower mssan ofer an turfon 7 wende man t grene to an weofode 7 sian gebringe man a turf r hi r wron r sunnan setlgange


7 hbbe him gworht of cwicbeame feower Cristes mlo 7 awrite on lcon ende:
7 Marcus, Lucas 7 Iohannes


Lege t Cristes ml on one pyt neoeweardne cwee onne: Crux Matheus crux Marcus crux Lucas crux sanctus Iohannes


Nim onne a turf 7 sete r ufon on 7 cwee onne nigon sion as word Crescite 7 swa oft Pater Noster 7 wende e onne eastweard 7 onlut nigon sion eadmodlice, 7 cwe onne as word:

Crescite, grow, & and multiply and be replete, and  fill terre the earth, be abundant.In the name of the father and of the son and of the holy spirit be blessed.

And the Lord's Prayer as often as the other.


And afterwards bear the sods to church and [have] a priest sing four masses over the sods, and turn the green side to the altar; afterwards bring the sods to where they were previously, before sunset.


And have him make of mountain ash four
marked crosses, and write on each end:
Matthew and Mark, Luke and John.


Lay the marked crosses at the base of each pit; then say: Cross Matthew, cross Mark, cross Luke, cross Saint John.


Take then the sods and set them down there, and say nine times this word, “Crescite” [grow!] and as before the Lord's Prayer as often, and turn then eastward, and bow nine times afterwards with humility, and say then these words:

Eastweard ic stande, arena ic me bidde
bidde ic one mran domine bidde one miclan drihten
bidde ic one haligan heofonrices weard
eoran ic bidde
7 upheofon
7 a soan sancta Marian
7 heofones meaht 7 heahreced
t ic mote is gealdor mid gife drihtnes toum ontynan

urh trumne geanc
aweccan as wstmas us to woruldnytte
gefyllan as foldan mid fste geleafan
wlitigigan as wangturf swa se witega cw
t se hfde are on eorrice se e lmyssan
dlde domlice drihtnes ances

Eastward I stand, mercy I bid for me,
Bid I the mightly ruler, bid the great

Bid I  the holy heaven’s ward,
Earth I bid and heaven
And the true holy Mary
And heaven’s might and high place
That I might with this chant to the lord’s gift
open to us.

Through firm thought
Awaken this growth for our worldly use,
Fill these fields through steadfast trust,
Beautify this grassland, as the wise one said
That he has earthly riches who gives
alms as his lordly ruler intends.

Wende e onne III sunganges astrece onne on andlang 7 arim r letanias 7 cwe onne:


Sanctus, sanctus, sanctus o ende.


Sing onne Benedicite aenedon earmon
7 Magnificat 7 Pater Noster III 7 bebeod hit Criste 7 sancta Marian 7 re halgan rode to lofe 7 to weoringa 7 to are am e t l7 age 7 eallon am e him undereodde synt

Turn you then three times sunwise, stretch then lengthwise and number litanies and say then:


Sanctus, sanctus, sanctus to the end.


Sing then Benedicite, arms extended, and Magnificat, and the Lord's Prayer three times, and commend it to Christ and Saint Mary and the holy cross, for love and for worthiness of the land owner and all those who are his subjects.

onne t eall sie gedon onne nime man uncu sd t lmesmannum 7 selle him twa
swylc, swylce man t him nime
7 gegaderie ealle his sulhgeteogo togdere borige onne on am beame stor 7 finol 7 gehalgode sapan 7 gehalgod sealt.


Nim onne t sd, sete on s sules bodig, cwe onne:

When all that is done, then take unfamiliar seeds from an almsman and give him twice as much as you took from him, and gather all his plough gear together; bore then into the beam a hole and [pour in the hole] frankincense and fennel and blessed soap and blessed salt.


Take then the seed, set it on the plough's body; say then:

Erce, Erce, Erce eoran modor
geunne e se alwalda, ece drihten
cera wexendra
7 wridendra
7 elniendra
sceafta hehra, scirra wstma
7 ra bradan berewstma
7 ra hwitan hwtewstma
7 ealra eoran wstma


Geunne him ece drihten
7 his halige, e on heofonum synt
t hys yr si gefriod wi ealra feonda gehwne
7 heo si geborgen wi ealra bealwa gehwylc
ara lyblaca geond l7 sawen

Erce, Erce, Erce, earth's mother,

give you, all-wielder, ever-ruler,            

fields fruitful and flourishing

fertile and strong

high shafts, bright abundance

and there, broad barley crops

and there white wheat crops

and all the earth’s abundance.


Forever grant him, ruler

and holy ones who are in heaven

that this earth is strong

against all fiends, every one,

and armored against every bane

every poison where sown through the land.

Nu ic bidde one waldend, se e as woruld gesceop t ne sy nan to s cwidol wif ne to s crftig man t awendan ne mge word us gecwedene

Now I bid the ruler, that this world created,

that neither anything of that talkative wife nor of that crafty man may unravel words thus spoken.

onne man a sulh for drife 7 a forman furh onsceote, cwe onne:


Hal wes u, folde, fira modor
Beo u growende on godes fme
fodre gefylled firum to nytte

Then one drives the plow forward and opens the first furrow, saying then:


Health to you, field, the people’s mother,

Be thou growing in the embrace of good

food-filled for the folk to enjoy.

Nim onne lces cynnes melo 7 abac man innewerdre handa bradn hlaf 7 gecned hine mid meolce 7 mid haligwtere 7 lecge under a forman furh

Cwee onne:

Ful cer fodres fira cinne
beorhtblowende u gebletsod weor
s haligan noman e as heofon gesceop
7 as eoran e we on lifia
se god, se as grundas geworhte geunne us growende gife
t us corna gehwylc cume to nytte

Then take each kind of meal and bake a loaf as wide as within the palm of a man’s hand and knead that with milk and with holy water and lay it under the first furrow.

Say then:

Fill, field, with food for humankind
bright blooming, your worth blessed
the holy name that this heaven shaped
and this earth that we live on

that god that wrought this ground give us growing gifts
that to us grain comes to benefit.

Cwe onne III
Crescite in nomine patris, sit benedicti
Amen 7 Pater Noster riwa

Then say three times,
Crescite in nomine patris, sit benedicti.
[Grow in the name of the father, be blessed.]

Amen and the Lord’s Prayer thrice.



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