Mandrake (plant)
Mandrake is the common name for members of the plant
Plants are living organisms belonging to the kingdom Plantae. Precise definitions of the kingdom vary, but as the term is used here, plants include familiar organisms such as trees, flowers, herbs, bushes, grasses, vines, ferns, mosses, and green algae. The group is also called green plants or...

In biology, a genus is a low-level taxonomic rank used in the biological classification of living and fossil organisms, which is an example of definition by genus and differentia...

 Mandragora, particularly the species Mandragora officinarum
Mandragora officinarum
Mandragora officinarum is a species of the plant genus mandrake. It has a variety of medicinal uses, especially anodyne and soporific, though in the past much of the use was due to superstition.-Physical characteristics:...

, belonging to the nightshades family (Solanaceae). Because mandrake contains deliriant
The deliriants are a special class of acetylcholine-inhibitor hallucinogen. The term was introduced by David F. Duncan and Robert S...

 hallucinogenic tropane alkaloid
Tropane alkaloid
Tropane alkaloids are a class of alkaloids and secondary metabolites that contain a tropane ring in their chemical structure...

s such as atropine
Atropine is a naturally occurring tropane alkaloid extracted from deadly nightshade , Jimson weed , mandrake and other plants of the family Solanaceae. It is a secondary metabolite of these plants and serves as a drug with a wide variety of effects...

, scopolamine
Scopolamine, also known as levo-duboisine, and hyoscine, is a tropane alkaloid drug with muscarinic antagonist effects. It is among the secondary metabolites of plants from Solanaceae family of plants, such as henbane, jimson weed and Angel's Trumpets , and corkwood...

, apoatropine, hyoscyamine
Hyoscyamine is a tropane alkaloid. It is a secondary metabolite found in certain plants of the Solanaceae family, including henbane , mandrake , jimsonweed , tomato and deadly nightshade...

 and the roots sometimes contain bifurcations causing them to resemble human figures, their roots have long been used in magic
Magic (paranormal)
Magic is the claimed art of manipulating aspects of reality either by supernatural means or through knowledge of occult laws unknown to science. It is in contrast to science, in that science does not accept anything not subject to either direct or indirect observation, and subject to logical...

 rituals, today also in neopagan religions such as Wicca
Wicca , is a modern Pagan religious movement. Developing in England in the first half of the 20th century, Wicca was popularised in the 1950s and early 1960s by a Wiccan High Priest named Gerald Gardner, who at the time called it the "witch cult" and "witchcraft," and its adherents "the Wica."...

 and Germanic revivalism
Germanic neopaganism
Germanic neopaganism is the contemporary revival of historical Germanic paganism. Precursor movements appeared in the early 20th century in Germany and Austria. A second wave of revival began in the early 1970s...

 religions such as Odinism
Odinism is a type of Germanic Neopaganism.Odinism may also refer to:*Norse paganism** the cult of Odin- See also :*Odinist Fellowship*Odinic Rite*The Odin Brotherhood*Wotanism, a Völkisch / White Nationalist movement*Wodenism...

The parsnip-shaped root is often branched.