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Behind the scenes
Hellebore is a real plant that was used in traditional, early European medicine to treat paralysis, gout, and insanity. However, many varieties of hellebore are toxic, and can cause symptoms ranging from vertigo to cardiac arrest. Some historians believe that Alexander the Great died of a hellebore overdose. In legend, it was believed to be used by witches to summon demons.
- Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (First appearance)