Substances & Homeopatic Remedies

    Aranea diadema

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    Aranea diadema


    1869, from Fr. arachnide (1806), introduced as name for this class of arthropods 1815 by Fr. biologist Jean Baptiste Pierre Antoine de Monet de Lamarck (1744-1829), from Gk. arachne "spider," which probably is cognate with L. aranea "spider, spider's web" (from aracsna).

    c.1290, from L. diadema "cloth band worn around the head as a sign of royalty," from Gk. diadema, from diadein "to bind across," from dia- "across" + dein "to bind," related to desmos "band." Used of the headband worn by Persian kings and adopted by Alexander the Great and his successors.


    Traditional name

    Italian: ragno crociato
    English: papal cross spider

    German: Kreuzspinne

    Used parts

    Tincture prepared by putting the living animals into alcohol


    Animalia; Arachnida; Araneae - Spiders; Araneidae



    Original proving

    The first symptomatology goes back to V. Grauvogl, who used it on two provers.
    A more recent proving was carried out by Dr. Hedwig Kaeske on herself (1955), and verification on four provers by Weckenmann (1959). Madame Eccius Kaeske experimented with Aranea Diadema for four months during 1955.

    Description of the substance

    There are about 70.000 species described
    Araneus diadematus is one of the most common and best known orb weavers. It builds a circular orb web and can be found either sitting at the center of the web with its head down or in a retreat at the end of a signal line It is easily identified by the distinctive white cross on the abdomen. This spider is most commonly called the 'garden spider', it is also known as the cross spider. This spider live mostly in grassland ,woodlands and gardens.. The environment must provide plenty of attachment sites for the scaffolding of the web; there must be sufficient vertical open space for the orb web
    Araneus diadematus feeds on insects, such as moths, flies and beetles. It is also known to catch forty to fifty moths a night thus helping to reduce the population of insects in the world.

     They make up an order of the class of arachnida with lungs. and have the following characteristics. Mandibles which end in a movable poison-fang, with curved and pointed, with a small hole near the tip through which passes the venom used by the animal to numb its victims; pediform feelers, without pincers at the end, and which end, in the female, with a small hook; two jaws, head and thorax, usually displaying a V, which indicates the space occupied by the head. Six or eight eyes. Moveable abdomen, usually soft, suspended from the head and thorax by a short pedicle, which is equipped with four to six spinnerets, below the anus, or in other words four to six papillae, fleshly at the end, cylindrical or conical, articulated, very close to each other, and punctuated at the ends by an infinite number of small hole through which passes the silky thread secreted by this animal. Legs are composed of seven joints, of which the first two form the hips, and third forms the thigh, the fourth and fifth the leg, and the last two form the trunk.
    The venom is the aranea secreted by a vesicle situated in the chelicerae or in the head and thorax, and which communicates with the end of the hook by an excretory duct. A bite from one of the large species, known in South America as spider-crabs, can cause the death of small vertebrates. It can even bring about an attack of fever in man, although not death.
     The organs which secrete silk consist of vesicles of different sizes, terminating in a duct which goes to the nozzles of the last joint. The substance contained within these vessels is similar to a sticky gum, pliability except when split into extremely fine threads. The silky substance flows through microscopic openings in the papillae, and forms a multitude of extremely fine threads, which are equal in number to the holes (these exceed a thousand in certain species). Once reunited together on the way out, they make up the threads destined to form a web. The aranea spins them using only the weight of its body, with the help of its legs.

    The female Araneus diadematus has a length of 6.5 to 20 mm, the male is 5.5 to 13 mm. The general color ranges from a pale yellow brown to nearly black, and it includes a number of white or yellow spots. The largest of the spots are arranged longitudinally near the anterior end. Usually, there is a pair of white spots at right angles to the longitudinal ones, which gives the group the form of a cross. The cross arangement of the spots is more apparent in the darker varieties, and are caused by guanine cells which shine through the transparent cuticle. The carapace has a median and marginal dark bands.
     There are four pairs of legs which fan out radially from the connecting carapace and sternum. Each leg has seven segments: a coxa and a trochanter, which are both short; a long femur and a kneelike patella; a slender tibia and metatarsus; and finally a tarsus with three claws. The first pair of the front legs are relatively long and used as feelers for probing the environment. Sensory hairs densely cover the distal leg segments.

    Araneus diadematus integrates information by the central nervous system and in the visual system of salticids. A spider will adjust its long body axis to be perpendicular to the path of a moving object in order to view the object with the main eyes. Input from the secondary eyes causes the spider to turn without any visual feedback. However, when a moving object is viewed only by the secondary eyes, a spider will not always turn towards it
    The web of Araneus diadematus usually has 25-30 radial threads forming regular angles of 12-15 degrees. Webs of young individuals often have many more radii than those of adults Araneus diadematus rebuilds its web every day . Before building a new web the spider eats its old web, thus conserving the silk proteins of the spider web
    The ultimate purpose of the spider web is to capture prey, and the orb web is a good trap. It is highly geometrical which suggests its special effectiveness and economy as a trap. The hub is slighltly higher than the centre so that the spider may run fast downhill. Therefore the area nearer the hub receives closer spacing of spirals and is coated more densely with sticky globules. Araneus diadematus spends most of its time on the web's hub monitoring the tensions and vibrations in the silk with its sensitive legs. The information regarding the precise position of the arriving insect will instantly be known to the spider. The female Araneus diadematus rests on one side of the web and monitors her web by holding on to a signal thread.
    . When catching prey, Araneus diadematus wraps the prey in silk thread before consuming it. After killing and wrapping the prey, Araneus diadematus does not always consume it immediately.. . The food is then carried to the center of the web or to the retreat. When ready the spider will suck the insect dry and the remains are thrown out of the web
    Chemical characteristics:
    The amino acid composition of the spider silk is a highly unusual protein. Amino acids with short side-chains make up 50-60% of the total fibroin (Foelix 1982).

    This spider is mature from summer to autumn and is usually at its largest in late autumn when it is at its oldest and often full of eggs. The Araneus spider can lay up to a thousand eggs at a time.
    The internal reproductive organs of the Araneus diadematus resembles those of other arthopods. The female's paired ovaries lie in the abdomen and join to form a common oviduct which ends in the uterus and opens to the outside in the epigastric furrow. The female also contains a pair of spermathacae or seminal receptacles. Sperm taken in during copulation are stored here until egg-laying. In males, a common duct is formed by a pair of coiled testes in the abdomen and opens to the exterior at the centre of the epigastric furrow. The males exude their sperm through the epigastric furrow onto a sperm web and transfer it to their palps. The terminal palpal organ is the sperm reservoir and carries out insemination through a narrow tube known as the embolus. The palpal organ serves as a pipette which can suck up and release seminal fluid.
     The males search for a female and are rather cautious when approaching a female, because they always risk being dealt with as prey. The male embraces the female's abdomen during copulation and inserts one bulb. Afterwards, the male leaves and his palps are refilled with sperm. This process may only be repeated a few times since the life expectancy of the male is shorter than that of the female.If not eaten the by the female, the male will usually die after mating.
    Before the female starts making her egg sac, she withdraws for several days into her retreat. She then spins a thin layer of single tightly woven silk threads. The first layer is molded by her abdominal movements into a disk known as a basal plate. Then she crawls underneath the basal plate and continuously turns around in circles spinning the cylindrical wall. The palps are held in contact with one side of this wall while spinnerets are placed on the opposite wall. After about two hours, the cylindrical wall grows to 5 mm in height. The cocoon size is directly related to the size of the spider, but not necessarily with the number of eggs it will hold. The female waits for a few minutes and begins to lay her eggs and cover them in a tight pack of silk threads. This becomes the cover plate in which the spider keeps adding layers of thread. The loop mesh ultimately wraps around the entire surface of the egg sac. The female will remain close to the cocoon for the next few days in case the threads need repairing. The female dies a few days after the egg sac is built. The cocoon will appear unchanged externally, while the spiderlings develop internally for a few months. Young spiders emerge from the egg sac in may but usually stay together until they are mature enough to leave. Spiderlings of Araneus diadematus are black and yellow and look almost identical to adults except for the markings The offspring will emerge in spring, and they will release fine threads of silk from their spinnerets to be carried off by the wind to new locations. Their journey through the air is called ballooning. Wherever each spider drops from the sky will be where its new life.