Plant Tree Runic Number




Associated Myths and Deities





Earth, Air, Fire and Water


Hel, Yggdrasil


Name: Ihwaz | Translation: Yew Tree
Pronunciation | A-waaz
Magical Uses: | to bring about profound change, to ease a life transition
Zodiac Sign: | Capricorn
Healing: | Good against Vertigo.

Divinitory Meanings: change, initiation, confrontation of fears, turning point, death, transformation

Limitation : there appears to be an obstacle in your way, but it is only an illusion. as long as you percieve it, you will grow from it so that you become stronger. When you have no more need of this obstacle, it will disappear.

Analysis : The yew tree has been associated with runes, magic and death in northern and western Europe since time immemorial. The reasons for this ancient association are numerous, but seem to principally derive from the fact that yews are evergreens which retain their greenery even through the death of winter, and because their red berries are symbolic of the blood of life. The yew is also extremely long-lived, thus effectively 'immortal'. Reverence for the yew dates back to before the times of the Celts, and continues today in Christian tradition. This rune is the turning point in the runic journey, and represents the transformation phase of the initiatory process. All rites of passage, particularly those marking the transition into adulthood, contain the symbolism of death, the idea being that one's former 'self' has died and given birth to a new persona. Eihwaz is the passage through which we must enter the realm of Hel in order to gain the knowledge and acceptance of our own mortality, as well as those mysteries which can only be learned from the dark Lady of the dead. The process is a truly frightening one, but it is something we all must go through if we are to confront our deepest fears and emerge with the kind of wisdom that cannot be taught but must be experienced. Eihwaz is the gateway to this wisdom, and lies between life (jera) and rebirth (perū).

The Rune Poem: Verse XIII Ihwaz
The Yew is a rough tree without,
Fixed hard in the earth, the fire's herd,
Sustained by its roots,
A delight on the homeland

| Algiz | Ansuz | Berkanan | Wyrd | Dagaz | Ehwaz | Fehu | Gebo | Hagalaz | Ihwaz | Ingwaz | Isa | Jera | Kauno | Laguz | Mannaz | Naudiz | Othila | Perth | Raido | Sowilo | Thurisaz | Tiwaz | | Wunjo |