Many superstitions have been connected with the willow
ever since, according to the authorized version of the English
Bible, the Israelites were said to have hung their harps on willow
trees (Psalms 1372). The weeping willow is said to have
drooped its branches since the time of the captivity of the Jews
in Babylon, in sympathy with this circumstance.
The common willow was once popularly believed to be
under the protection of the devil, and it was said that if any person
were to cast a knot upon a young willow, sit under the tree,
and renounce his or her baptism, the devil would confer upon
that person supernatural power. It was believed in Bulgaria
that a fever would depart if you ran around a willow tree three
times at sunset, crying The fever shall take thee and the sun
shall warm me.