Magickal and Medicinal Herbs: Thyme 101

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(Thymus vulgaris)

Have you ever noticed how many truly beneficial members there are in the mint family? Thyme is definitely one of them. This herb has been used for thousands of years in order to treat wounds, prevent sickness and to keep nightmares at bay. It is strongly antiseptic and was used by the Ancient Egyptians as part of their embalming process. The magickal properties of thyme include purification, love, abundance and courage among others.

Thyme is a classic herb with historic benefits closely matching modern scientific uses. It is a rich source of several essential vitamins such as vitamins A, E, C, K, B-complex and folate and it is also one of the best sources of calcium, iron, manganese, selenium, and potassium. Thyme tea is best suited for respiratory complaints, namely whooping cough and bronchitis.

Other Names

tomillo, mother of thyme, garden thyme, serpyllum, common thyme, German thyme


Thyme refers to the dried leaves and flowers of the plant.

Medicinal Properties

  • antispasmodic
  • expectorant
  • antibacterial
  • antioxidant
  • antiseptic
  • diaphoretic
  • anti-fungal
  • anti-helminthic
  • vermifuge
  • immune boosting
  • anti-inflammatory
  • antiviral

Holistic Uses

  • bronchitis
  • whooping cough
  • coughs
  • sore throat
  • ear infection
  • gastric complaints
  • mouthwash
  • deodorant
  • breathing disorders
  • acne
  • sanitation
  • may help with baldness
  • may help with bedwetting
  • may help combat tooth decay
  • muscle spasms
  • may stimulate appetite

Germany’s Commission E approves thyme’s traditional use as a treatment for coughs and upper respiratory tract congestion and also for symptoms of bronchitis, whooping cough, and catarrh (inflammation of upper respiratory tract mucous membranes).

Thyme and thymol have shown antibacterial activity in vitro against Salmonella typhimurium, Staphylococcus aureus, Heliobacter pylori, Porphyromonas gingivalis, Selenomonas artemidis,Streptococcus sobrinus, and Streptococcus mutans. This activity is possibly related to cell membrane perforation.

Thymol has also demonstrated antifungal activity against Candida albicans, Aspergillus parasiticus, and Aspergillus flavous.

In vitro and in vivo studies show that thyme flavonoids relax tracheal and ileal smooth muscles. The mechanism of action may be inhibition of acetylcholine and histamine receptors, calcium channel antagonism, or inhibition of phasic contractions. This antispasmolytic activity may be dependent on flavone aglycone concentrations.

In vitro and in vivo studies of thyme have also demonstrated antioxidant effects and anti-inflammatory effects including inhibition of prostaglandin synthesis. There are few studies on pharmacodynamic effects of thyme or thyme constituents. One study of the thyme phenolic constituents thymol and carvacrol showed rapid urinary excretion of metabolites.

Method(s) of Administration

tea, tincture, salve, ointment, poultice, mouthwash, honey, and culinary applications


  • The oral dose for adults is generally 1-2 g/day of thyme extract.
  • A tea made of 1-2 g dried thyme herb steeped in 8oz of boiling water for 10 minutes has been recommended for upper respiratory tract infections.
  • Traditional doses of liquid extracts range from 1-2 g or 20-40 drops of liquid extracts or tinctures daily.
  • A 5% infusion of thyme in water has been recommended for ‘periodontal prophylaxis. Thymol is an ingredient in commercial mouthwash, which is effective in reducing oral bacteria.
  • Topical treatments that include thyme oil as an ingredient (1-2% thyme oil) have been recommended for a variety of skin conditions ranging from baldness to paronychia (inflammation of tissue surrounding fingernail or toenail).

Contraindications, Side Effects, and Interactions

Thyme might slow blood clotting. Taking thyme along with medications that also slow clotting might increase the chances of bruising and bleeding.

Thyme Around the House

  • The tiny flowers will attract bees to your garden. Honey made from these flowers is highly prized.
  • Sachets of thyme hung in your closet or folded in with your stored clothes will keep moths out, and smells nicer than mothballs.
  • A strong infusion of thyme makes a great hair rinse for dark hair and repels head lice. You can add rosemary as well if you have problems with dandruff.
  • Oil of thyme can be used as a household cleaning agent as it is a good germ killer and drives away pests. Just put a few drops in a spray bottle with 4 parts water to 1 part vinegar.

Magickal Associations of Thyme

Deities – Mars, Aries, Freya, Aphrodite, and the Fae

Magickal Correspondences of Thyme

Zodiac – Aries and Capricorn
Planet – Venus
Element – Water and Air
Gender – Feminine
Crystals – Citrine, amethyst and bloodstone

Magickal Properties of Thyme

  • Purification
  • Love
  • Courage
  • Sleep
  • Psychic work
  • Healing
  • Strength
  • Faery magick
  • Abundance
  • Prosperity
  • Focus Personal Energies
  • Health
  • Happy Dreams
  • Dispels stagnant negative energy

Simple Spells

  • Burn thyme to invoke the spirit of courage.
  • Burn dried thyme to purify your home and keep everyone inside healthy while filling your home with loving and peaceful vibrations.
  • Wear an amulet filled with thyme to attract love to you or place it under your pillow to help you sleep peacefully.
  • Sleeping with thyme near you will also help you to decode your dreams.
  • Place thyme beneath your pillow for a restful sleep and happy dreams and to prevent nightmares.
  • Faeries love thyme. Its addition to your garden will attract them and it can be used in spells to communicate with faeries.
  • Take fresh thyme and honey outside under a full moon and leave it as a gift for the Fae. Ask them for help in finding the thing you have lost. Once you’ve found what you were looking for, leave them another gift of fresh thyme to say thanks.

Thyme makes an excellent honey. Click here to learn how to make an herbal infused honey. I’m sure the faeries would love to try some.

  • Make a floor wash with thyme to dispel melancholy, hopelessness and other mellow but negative vibrations, especially after a family tragedy or during a long sickness. Add marjoram to the mix to help draw joy back in while you’re at it.
  • Use in love spells to invoke more gentleness and understanding into a relationship.
  • Drinking an infusion of thyme at Litha will enable the practitioner to observe the dance of the sidhe.
  • Add thyme to your bathwater to help you let go of past problems and baggage.
  • If you have experienced a heavy loss, such as a loved one passing, the magickal properties of thyme can help you heal. Once your deepest grief has passed, hang bundles of fresh thyme into the windows and doors of your home and open as many of them as you can. Burn a dried thyme bundle and walk through the house, allowing the thyme to cleanse your home of the heaviest grief and allow peace back in. Let the smoke from the thyme escape out of the windows and doors. Take the hanging thyme bundles and bury them close to your favourite tree to honour the person who has passed.
  • Add a thyme infusion to the bath regularly to ensure a constant flow of money.
  • Place in a jar and keep in the home or at work for good luck.
  • Thyme will increase the flow of money coming to you in a healthy and sustainable way. To harness this, plant thyme in your garden or keep a small pot in the office.
  • If you are going to an important meeting, prepare a few days before by making a thyme tea, and then adding the strained tea to the washing machine with the outfit you plan on wearing to the meeting. This will imbue you with calming energy while also giving you courage. It will also help to ensure that you get what you want and need from the meeting.

Purchase Thyme in the Apothecary.

Discover more about Thyme Essential Oil.

Dig Deeper into your herbal education by exploring the medicinal and magickal properties of more herbs and essential oils.

Disclaimer: Please note that I am a not medical professional and everything written here is a product of my own research. Don’t take any advice given here over that of a trained doctor. If you ingest any herbs, always make sure that you’re 100% sure that they’re safe. If you’re pregnant or giving to a child, always consult a doctor before ingesting herbs and plant you aren’t familiar with. Magickal instruction and spells are for personal entertainment purposes only. The desired result/outcome cannot be guaranteed as a result of using any magickal item, and should not be used as a replacement for medical/professional assistance.

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