Liberty cap: the surprising tale of how… magic mushroom got its name
There is a common fungus [psilocybe semilanceata], which so exactly represents the pole and cap of liberty, that it seems offered by nature herself… mushroom patriots, with a mushroom cap of liberty.
In America, revolutionary groups declared their rebellion against British rule by raising a liberty cap upon a pole in the public squares of their towns. In 1781 a medal, designed by no less than Benjamin Franklin to commemorate the fifth anniversary of the Declaration of Independence, Libertas Americana (the personification of American Liberty) is depicted with wild, free flowing hair, the pole and cap of liberty slung across her shoulder…. but in origin, the liberty cap’s name has nothing to do with psychologist and psychedelic drug advocate Timothy Leary (“turn on, tune in, drop out”) or the 1960s counter culture. Rather – and somewhat improbably – it traces a path back through the political revolutions of the early modern period… to a conical cap worn by Rome’s former slaves. To place the cap on their heads was a sign of their liberation…
Original Article (The Conversation):
Liberty cap: the surprising tale of how Europe’s magic mushroom got its name
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