According to the 'York Courant' 1794, it is wise to be cautious at this season,
when nuts are so abundant, we state that the sudden death of
Mr Nunn of Cley, Norfolk is generally attributed to eating a great quantity
of filberts and drinking port wine therewith.'
There is a well in Ireland known as the well of wisdom, overhanging the water
is the sacred hazel tree which produces the nine nuts of poetic art and wisdom.
These nuts fall into the water and are eaten by Fintan the salmon of knowledge.
When the nuts fall into the water, bubbles of inspiration rise to the surface, which
with the husks then float down the five streams that flow from this well spreading
wisdom to the rest of the world.
Apart from the nuts, belief in the power of the hazel was and is still widespread
throughout Britain; in the more remote parts of the country it is still a custom
for brides to be presented with bags of nuts upon leaving the church to encourage
fertility in their marriage.
Hazel wands and dowsing rods must be cut on midsummer's eve as the hazel tree
is at its most powerful then. The smaller more flexible branches of the tree are
woven into hats, placed upon the head they can then be used to make wishes.
Sailors also use these hats as protection against storms.
Faeries and Folklore of the British Isles.