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The Pike as we know it today has not changed in either appearance or manner in the last 2000 years, Pliny the elder a roman historian referred to an "esox" in the river Rhine in Germany. Translated in various forms it relates to fish, amongst numerous translations of the pike as we know it today is pic, esok, geddr, snook, these have been taken from Swedish, Norwegian, Anglo Saxon, Greek and Latin sources. The shape of the pike can be likened to the ancient "Pict Axe" it is from the shape of the pict axe that the name "Pike" is derived.
With up to 700 teeth and with some facing backwards the pike has a created a fear factor amongst fresh water communities. It has been called the fresh water shark, with the largest pike caught in the UK mainland being a staggering 46lb (Scarborough) and the largest pike recorded being 55lbs (Germany) its reputation is not without reasonable assumption. Its food source can be anything from insects from the water surface to amphibians such as newts or frogs and their cuisine is not restricted to the water, mice are known to be included within their diet. The rear facing teeth within their jaws mean that once they latch on to something they can grip it with ease and prevent the escape of its prey, many a fisherman has had a nasty nip from these fish named after an ancient tool of destruction.
The prized disc that is held so sacred within the druidic legends and given to the needy as a cure for all ailments is believed to have included fish amongst the ingredients, thus promoting good health and an immediate "pick me up" for a suffering patient. With the Pike hiding amongst the reed beds, the Ovate (druids apprentice) would know how to use a reeds seeds and roots for food, the shaft as a spear, how to roast the Pike using the shaft as a support and the spear as a skewer and to then use the bones, meat, seeds and roots to create biscuits shaped as discs that would have tremendous nutritional value.
The spiritual essence of the pike would be that of the hunter/predator also being of the river, meaning of sacred status. With the flow of the river the pike is able to remain static and patient, waiting for opportunity. The pike when disturbed or looking to feed will head for a reed bed and as such will also inherit the qualities of the reed, whilst the reed as a spear will go straight to the target, the Pike is known to use its fins to propel at great speed towards its target. Bran was a God among men who is long associated with rivers, it is claimed his knowledge came from all sources, just as the Alder allowed him to house his Ravens, the rivers kept his fish. The pike is a secretive, evasive and territorial survivor, its wisdom and heritage beyond dispute.
Fish as a source of nutrition is known for its iron, potassium, protein, also the blood cleansing and bone strengthening qualities. The liver, the blood, stomach, and bowel will all benefit from fish being a part of the staple diet.
The pike as a totem has adorned many a tribal shield or been included in a coat of arms. The Finnish Uusikaupunki coat of arms has two pike back to back, whilst the Gimte arms in Lower Saxony Germany portrays the pike in the frivolous act of swimming freely. The heraldry of England terminology for the pike is "Lucy", whilst Scotland calls it a "Ged."
To sit on a riverbank and meditate to the strength and wisdom of the pike will benefit all areas of ones life, the legends of the Alder and Reed will help with: being heard; sharing wisdom; maintaining a hidden curriculum, also encouraging adaptability; versatility; patience and will assist with positive action. The Pike is a great allie and one to held in the most sacred status.