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The yew (Scientific Taxus baccata) is a type of conifer that grows naturally in across Europe. This species is also now known as Common Yew, English Yew or European Yew. They are thought to live in excess of 3000 years.

They are the prefered wood for the contruction of longbows, although ash and wychelm, were also common. At one time importation of yew staves was part of a tax on wine. Spanish yew was preferred.

Currently North American yew is thought to be the most like medieval yew, although more recent plantations in Spain are nearing a usuable state.

They are very common in English churchyards.

See Also