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History of Basil, Ocium basilicum

History

It is native to tropical Asia and central Africa. Both Bush and Garden Basil are natives of India, from whence it was introduced in 1573.

Holy Basil, also called 'Thulsi' or 'Tulsi', is highly revered in Hinduism and also has religious significance in the Greek Orthodox Church, where it is used to prepare holy water.

The word basil comes from the Greek , meaning "king", as it is believed to have grown above the spot where St. Constantine and Helen discovered the Holy Cross.

It is cultivated extensively in France, Egypt, Hungary, Indonesia, Morocco, and the United States (Arizona, California, New Mexico, NorthCarolina), Greece and Israel.





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