Medicinal and Occult Qualities



This old reference book contains illustrations, but they are not large enough to be of much use as far as an identification tool. I’ll supplement the text with more current information for some of the plants that are of use in the modern garden.

Illustration Solanum dulcamara0.jpg
Image Credit Wikimedia


[bittersweet, bittersweet nightshade, bitter nightshade, blue bindweed, Amara Dulcis,[3] climbing nightshade,[4] fellenwort, felonwood, poisonberry, poisonflower, scarlet berry, snakeberry,[5][6][7] trailing bittersweet, trailing nightshade, violet bloom, and woody nightshade. – Wikipedia]

“CONSIDERING divers shires in this nation give divers names to one and the same herb, and that the common name which it bears in one county, is not known in another; I shall take the pains to set down all the names that I know of each herb: pardon me for setting that name first, which is most common to myself. Besides Amara Dulcis, some call it Mortal, others Bitter-sweet; some Woody Night-shade, and others Felon-wort.

Descript.] It grows up with woody stalks even to a man’s height, and sometimes higher. The leaves fall off at the approach of winter, and spring out of the same stalk at spring-time: the branch is compassed about with a whitish bark, and has a pith in the middle of it: the main branch branches itself into many small ones with claspers, laying hold on what is next to them, as vines do: it bears many leaves, they grow in no order at all, at least in no regular order; the leaves are longish, though somewhat broad, and pointed at the ends: many of them have two little leaves growing at the end of their foot-stalk; some have but one, and some none. The leaves are of a pale green colour; the flowers are of a purple colour, or of a perfect blue, like to violets, and they stand many of them together in knots: the berries are green at first, but when they are ripe they are very red; if you taste them, you shall find them just as the crabs which we in Sussex call Bittersweet, viz. sweet at first and bitter afterwards.

Place.] They grow commonly almost throughout England, especially in moist and shady places.

Time.] The leaves shoot out about the latter end of March, if the temperature of the air be ordinary; it flowers in July, and the seeds are ripe soon after, usually in the next month.

Government and virtues.] It is under the planet Mercury, and a notable herb of his also, if it be rightly gathered under his influence. It is excellently good to remove witchcraft both in men and beasts, as also all sudden diseases whatsoever. Being tied round about the neck, is one of the most admirable remedies for the vertigo or dizziness in the head; and that is the reason (as Tragus saith) the people in Germany commonly hang it about their cattle’s necks, when they fear any such evil hath betided[2] them: Country people commonly take the berries of it, and having bruised them, apply them to felons, and thereby soon rid their fingers of such troublesome guests.

We have now showed you the external use of the herb; we shall speak a word or two of the internal, and so conclude. Take notice, it is a Mercurial herb, and therefore of very subtile parts, as indeed all Mercurial plants are; therefore take a pound of the wood and leaves together, bruise the wood (which you may easily do, for it is not so hard as oak) then put it in a pot, and put to it three pints of white wine, put on the pot-lid and shut it close; and let it infuse hot over a gentle fire twelve hours, then strain it out, so have you a most excellent drink to open obstructions of the liver and spleen, to help difficulty of breath, bruises and falls, and congealed blood in any part of the body, it helps the yellow jaundice, the dropsy, and black jaundice, and to cleanse women newly brought to bed. You may drink a quarter of a pint of the infusion every morning. It purges the body very gently, and not churlishly as some hold. And when you find good by this, remember me.

They that think the use of these medicines is too brief, it is only for the cheapness of the book; let them read those books of mine, of the last edition, viz. ReveriusVeslingusRiolanusJohnsonSennertus, and Physic for the Poor.


{Commonly called Creeping Charlie now]

Several counties give it different names, so that there is scarcely any herb growing of that bigness that has got so many: It is called Cat’s-foot, Ground-ivy, Gill-go-by-ground, and Gill-creep-by-ground, Turn-hoof, Haymaids, and Alehoof.

Descript.] This well known herb lies, spreads and creeps upon the ground, shoots forth roots, at the corners of tender jointed stalks, set with two round leaves at every joint somewhat hairy, crumpled and unevenly dented about the edges with round dents; at the joints likewise, with the leaves towards the end of the branches, come forth[6] hollow, long flowers, of a blueish purple colour, with small white spots upon the lips that hang down. The root is small with strings.

Place.] It is commonly found under hedges, and on the sides of ditches, under houses, or in shadowed lanes, and other waste grounds, in almost every part of this land.

Time.] They flower somewhat early, and abide a great while; the leaves continue green until Winter, and sometimes abide, except the Winter be very sharp and cold.

Government and virtues.] It is an herb of Venus, and therefore cures the diseases she causes by sympathy, and those of Mars by antipathy; you may usually find it all the year long except the year be extremely frosty; it is quick, sharp, and bitter in taste, and is thereby found to be hot and dry; a singular herb for all inward wounds, exulcerated lungs, or other parts, either by itself, or boiled with other the like herbs; and being drank, in a short time it eases all griping pains, windy and choleric humours in the stomach, spleen or belly; helps the yellow jaundice, by opening the stoppings of the gall and liver, and melancholy, by opening the stoppings of the spleen; expels venom or poison, and also the plague; it provokes urine and women’s courses; the decoction of it in wine drank for some time together, procures ease to them that are troubled with the sciatica, or hip-gout: as also the gout in hands, knees or feet; if you put to the decoction some honey and a little burnt alum, it is excellently good to gargle any sore mouth or throat, and to wash the sores and ulcers in the privy parts of man or woman; it speedily helps green wounds, being bruised and bound thereto. The juice of it boiled with a little honey and verdigrease, doth wonderfully cleanse fistulas, ulcers, and stays the spreading or eating of cancers and ulcers; it helps the itch, scabs, wheals, and other breakings out in any part of the body. The juice of Celandine, Field-daisies, and Ground-ivy clarified, and a little fine sugar dissolved therein, and dropped into the eyes, is a sovereign remedy for all pains, redness, and watering of them; as also for the pin and web, skins and films growing over the sight, it helps beasts as well as men. The juice dropped into the ears, wonderfully helps the noise and singing of them, and helps the hearing which is decayed. It is good to tun up with new drink, for it will clarify it in a night, that it will be the fitter to be drank the next morning; or if any drink be thick with removing, or any other accident, it will do the like in a few hours.

ArtStation - Anemone - Botanical Illustration, Jenny Thalheim


Called also Wind flower, because they[10] say the flowers never open but when the wind blows. Pliny is my author; if it be not so, blame him. The seed also (if it bears any at all) flies away with the wind.

Place and Time.] They are sown usually in the gardens of the curious, and flower in the Spring-time. As for discription I shall pass it, being well known to all those that sow them.

Government and virtues.] It is under the dominion of Mars, being supposed to be a kind of Crow-foot. The leaves provoke the terms mightily, being boiled, and the decoction drank. The body being bathed with the decoction of them, cures the leprosy. The leaves being stamped and the juice snuffed up in the nose, purges the head mightily; so does the root, being chewed in the mouth, for it procures much spitting, and brings away many watery and phlegmatic humours, and is therefore excellent for the lethargy. And when all is done, let physicians prate what they please, all the pills in the dispensatory purge not the head like to hot things held in the mouth. Being made into an ointment, and the eyelids anointed with it, it helps inflammations of the eyes, whereby it is palpable, that every stronger draws its weaker like. The same ointment is excellently good to cleanse malignant and corroding ulcers.

Asparagus Free Stock Photo - Public Domain Pictures


Descript.It rises up at first with divers[14] white and green scaly heads, very brittle or easy to break while they are young, which afterwards rise up in very long and slender green stalks of the bigness of an ordinary riding wand, at the bottom of most, or bigger, or lesser, as the roots are of growth; on which are set divers branches of green leaves shorter and smaller than fennel to the top; at the joints whereof come forth small yellowish flowers, which turn into round berries, green at first and of an excellent red colour when they are ripe, shewing like bead or coral, wherein are contained exceeding hard black seeds; the roots are dispersed from a spongeous head into many long, thick, and round strings, wherein is sucked much nourishment out of the ground, and increaseth plentifully thereby.

Lemon Balm (Melissa officinalis) Herbal Extract – Red Moon Herbs

[I assume this means Lemon Balm]


This herb is so well known to be an inhabitant almost in every garden, that I shall not need to write any discription thereof, although its virtues, which are many, may not be omitted.

Government and virtues.] It is an herb of Jupiter, and under Cancer, and strengthens nature much in all its actions. Let a syrup[16] made with the juice of it and sugar (as you shall be taught at the latter end of this book) be kept in every gentlewoman’s house to relieve the weak stomachs and sick bodies of their poor sickly neighbours; as also the herb kept dry in the house, that so with other convenient simples, you may make it into an electuary with honey, according as the disease is you shall be taught at the latter end of my book. The Arabian physicians have extolled the virtues thereof to the skies; although the Greeks thought it not worth mentioning. Seraphio says, it causes the mind and heart to become merry, and revives the heart, faintings and swoonings, especially of such who are overtaken in sleep, and drives away all troublesome cares and thoughts out of the mind, arising from melancholy or black choler; which Avicen also confirms. It is very good to help digestion, and open obstructions of the brain, and hath so much purging quality in it (saith Avicen) as to expel those melancholy vapours from the spirits and blood which are in the heart and arteries, although it cannot do so in other parts of the body. Dioscorides says, that the leaves steeped in wine, and the wine drank, and the leaves externally applied, is a remedy against the stings of a scorpion, and the bitings of mad dogs; and commends the decoction thereof for women to bathe or sit in to procure their courses; it is good to wash aching teeth therewith, and profitable for those that have the bloody flux. The leaves also, with a little nitre taken in drink, are good against the surfeit of mushrooms, helps the griping pains of the belly; and being made into an electuary, it is good for them that cannot fetch their breath: Used with salt, it takes away wens, kernels, or hard swelling in the flesh or throat; it cleanses foul sores, and eases pains of the gout. It is good for the liver and spleen. A tansy or caudle made with eggs, and juice thereof while it is young, putting to it some sugar and rose-water, is good for a woman in child-birth, when the after-birth is not thoroughly voided, and for their faintings upon or in their sore travail. The herb bruised and boiled in a little wine and oil, and laid warm on boil, will ripen it, and break it.

Green Basil plant | Free public domain illustration


Descript.The greater of Ordinary Bazil rises up usually with one upright stalk, diversly branching forth on all sides, with two leaves at every joint, which are somewhat broad and round, yet pointed, of a pale green colour, but fresh; a little snipped about the edges, and of a strong healthy scent. The flowers are small and white, and standing at the tops of the branches, with two small leaves at the joints, in some places green, in others brown, after which come black seed. The root perishes at the approach of Winter, and therefore must be new sown every year.

Place.] It grows in gardens.

Time.] It must be sowed late, and flowers in the heart of Summer, being a very tender plant.

Government and virtues.] This is the herb which all authors are together by the ears about, and rail at one another (like lawyers). Galen and Dioscorides hold it not fit to be taken inwardly; and Chrysippus rails at it with downright Billingsgate rhetoric; Pliny, and the Arabian physicians defend it.

For my own part, I presently found that speech true:

Non nostrium inter nos tantas componere lites.

And away to Dr. Reason went I, who told me it was an herb of Mars, and under the Scorpion, and perhaps therefore called Basilicon; and it is no marvel if it carry a kind of virulent quality with it. Being applied to the place bitten by venomous beasts, or stung by a wasp or hornet, it speedily draws the poison to it; Every like draws his like. Mizaldus affirms, that, being laid to rot in horse-dung, it will breed venomous beasts. Hilarius, a French physician, affirms upon his own knowledge, that an acquaintance of his, by common smelling to it, had a scorpion bred in his brain. Something is the matter; this herb and rue will not grow together, no, nor near one another: and we know rue is as great an enemy to poison as any that grows.

To conclude; It expels both birth and after-birth; and as it helps the deficiency[18] of Venus in one kind, so it spoils all her actions in another. I dare write no more of it.

LEIF BLOG | Botanical illustration vintage, Botanical drawings, Botanical illustration


Both the garden and field beans are so well known, that it saves me the labour of writing any description of them. The virtues follow.

Government and virtues.] They are plants of Venus, and the distilled water of the flower of garden beans is good to clean the face and skin from spots and wrinkles, and the meal or flour of them, or the small beans doth the same. The water distilled from the green husk, is held to be very effectual against the stone, and to provoke urine. Bean flour is used in poultices to assuage[19] inflammations arising from wounds, and the swelling of women’s breasts caused by the curdling of their milk, and represses their milk; Flour of beans and Fenugreek mixed with honey, and applied to felons, boils, bruises, or blue marks by blows, or the imposthumes in the kernels of the ears, helps them all, and with Rose leaves, Frankincense and the white of an egg, being applied to the eyes, helps them that are swollen or do water, or have received any blow upon them, if used with wine. If a bean be parted in two, the skin being taken away, and laid on the place where the leech hath been set that bleeds too much, stays the bleeding. Bean flour boiled to a poultice with wine and vinegar, and some oil put thereto, eases both pains and swelling of the privities. The husk boiled in water to the consumption of a third part thereof, stays a lask; and the ashes of the husks, made up with old hog’s grease, helps the old pains, contusions, and wounds of the sinews, the sciatica and gout. The field beans have all the aforementioned virtues as the garden beans.

Beans eaten are extremely windy meat; but if after the Dutch fashion, when they are half boiled you husk them and then stew them (I cannot tell you how, for I never was a cook in all my life), they are wholesome food.


[Pole & Scarlet Running Beans]

Descript.This French or kidney Bean arises at first but with one stalk, which afterwards divides itself into many arms or branches, but all so weak that if they be not sustained with sticks or poles, they will be fruitless upon the ground. At several places of these branches grow foot stalks, each with three broad round and pointed green leaves at the end of them; towards the top comes forth divers flowers made like to pease blossoms, of the same colour for the most part that the fruit will be of, that is to say, white, yellow, red, blackish, or of a deep purple, but white is the most usual; after which come long and slender flat pods, some crooked, some straight, with a string running down the back thereof, wherein is flattish round fruit made like a kidney; the root long, spreads with many strings annexed to it, and perishes every year.

There is another sort of French beans commonly growing with us in this land, which is called the Scarlet flower Bean.

This rises with sundry branches as the other, but runs higher, to the length of hop-poles, about which they grow twining, but turning contrary to the sun, having foot-stalks with three leaves on each, as on the others; the flowers also are like the other, and of a most orient scarlet colour. The Beans are larger than the ordinary kind, of a dead purple colour turning black when ripe and dry; the root perishes in Winter.

Government and virtues.] These also belong to Dame Venus, and being dried and beat to powder, are as great strengtheners of the kidneys as any are; neither is there a better remedy than it; a dram at a time taken in white wine to prevent the stone, or to cleanse the kidneys of gravel or stoppage. The ordinary French Beans are of an easy digestion; they move the belly, provoke urine, enlarge the breast that is straightened with shortness of breath, engender sperm, and incite to venery. And the scarlet coloured Beans, in regard of the glorious beauty of their colour, being set near a quickset hedge, will much adorn the same, by climbing up thereon, so that they may be discerned a great way, not without admiration of the beholders at a distance. But they will go near to kill the quicksets by cloathing them in scarlet.


It is so well known that it needs no description. The virtues thereof are as follows:—

Government and virtues.] It is a plant of Venus in Aries. If any ask the reason why Venus is so prickly? Tell them it is because she is in the house of Mars. The buds, leaves, and branches, while they are green, are of a good use in the ulcers and putrid sores of the mouth and throat, and of the quinsey, and likewise to heal other fresh wounds and sores; but the flowers and fruit unripe are very binding, and so profitable for the bloody flux, lasks, and are a fit remedy for spitting of blood. Either the decoction of the powder or of the root taken, is good to break or drive forth gravel and the stone in the reins and kidneys. The leaves and brambles, as well green as dry, are exceeding good lotions for sores in the mouth, or secret parts. The decoction of them, and of the dried branches, do much bind the belly and are good for too much flowing of women’s courses; the berries of the flowers are a powerful remedy against the poison of the most venomous serpents; as well drank as outwardly applied, helps the sores of the fundament and the piles; the juice of the berries mixed with the juice of mulberries, do bind more effectually, and helps all fretting and eating sores and ulcers wheresoever. The distilled water of the branches, leaves, and flowers, or of the fruit, is very pleasant in taste, and very effectual in fevers and hot distempers of the body, head, eyes, and other parts, and for the purposes aforesaid. The leaves boiled in lye, and the head washed therewith, heals the itch and running sores thereof, and makes the hair black. The powder of the leaves strewed on cankers and running ulcers, wonderfully helps to heal them. Some use to condensate the juice of the leaves, and some the juice of the berries, to keep for their use all the year, for the purposes aforesaid.

Borage, Bourrache (1829) | Borago officinalis Chaumeton, F.P… | Flickr


These are so well known to the inhabitants in every garden that I hold it needless to describe them.

To these I may add a third sort, which is not so common, nor yet so well known, and therefore I shall give you its name and description.

It is called Langue de Bœuf; but why then should they call one herb by the name of Bugloss, and another by the name Langue de Bœuf? it is some question to me, seeing one signifies Ox-tongue in Greek, and the other signifies the same in French.

Descript.] The leaves whereof are smaller than those of Bugloss but much rougher; the stalks rising up about a foot and a half high, and is most commonly of a red colour; the flowers stand in scaly round heads, being composed of many small yellow flowers not much unlike to those of Dandelion, and the seed flieth away in down as that doth; you may easily know the flowers by their taste, for they are very bitter.

Place.] It grows wild in many places of this land, and may be plentifully found near London, as between Rotherhithe and Deptford, by the ditch side. Its virtues are held to be the same with Borage and Bugloss, only this is somewhat hotter.

Time.] They flower in June and July, and the seed is ripe shortly after.

Government and virtues.] They are all three herbs of Jupiter and under Leo, all great cordials, and great strengtheners of nature. The leaves and roots are to very good purpose used in putrid and pestilential fevers, to defend the heart, and help to resist and expel the poison, or the venom of other creatures: the seed is of the like effect; and the seed and leaves are good to increase milk in women’s breasts; the leaves, flowers, and seed, all or any of them, are good to expel pensiveness and melancholy; it helps to clarify the blood, and mitigate heat in fevers. The juice made into a syrup prevails much to all the purposes aforesaid, and is put, with other cooling, opening and cleansing herbs to open obstructions, and help the yellow jaundice, and mixed with Fumitory, to cool, cleanse, and temper the blood thereby; it helps the itch, ringworms and tetters, or other spreading scabs or sores. The flowers candied or made into a conserve, are helpful in the former cases, but are chiefly used as a cordial, and are good for those that are weak in long sickness, and to comfort the heart and spirits of those that are in a consumption, or troubled with often swoonings, or passions of the heart. The distilled water is no less effectual to all the purposes aforesaid, and helps the redness and inflammations of the eyes, being washed therewith; the herb dried is never used, but the green; yet the ashes thereof boiled in mead, or honied water, is available against the inflammations and ulcers in the mouth or throat, to gargle it therewith; the roots of Bugloss are effectual, being made into a licking electuary for the cough, and to condensate thick phlegm, and the rheumatic distillations upon the lungs.

Botanical Print Cornflower Wall Art Printable Digital | Etsy in 2021 | Botanical flowers, Flower illustration, Botanical prints

[Bachelor’s Button or Cornflower]

It is called Syanus, I suppose from the[29] colour of it; Hurt-sickle, because it turns the edge of the sickles that reap the corn; Blue-blow, Corn-flower, and Blue-bottle.

Descript.] I shall only describe that which is commonest, and in my opinion most useful; its leaves spread upon the ground, being of a whitish green colour, somewhat on the edges like those of Corn-Scabious, amongst which rises up a stalk divided into divers branches, beset with long leaves of a greenish colour, either but very little indented, or not at all; the flowers are of a blueish colour, from whence it took its name, consisting of an innumerable company of flowers set in a scaly head, not much unlike those of Knap-weed; the seed is smooth, bright, and shining, wrapped up in a woolly mantle; the root perishes every year.

Place.] They grow in cornfields, amongst all sorts of corn (pease, beans, and tares excepted.) If you please to take them up from thence, and transplant them in your garden, especially towards the full of the moon, they will grow more double than they are, and many times change colour.

Time.] They flower from the beginning of May, to the end of the harvest.

Government and virtues.] As they are naturally cold, dry, and binding, so they are under the dominion of Saturn. The powder or dried leaves of the Blue-bottle, or Corn-flower, is given with good success to those that are bruised by a fall, or have broken a vein inwardly, and void much blood at the mouth; being taken in the water of Plaintain, Horsetail, or the greater Confrey, it is a remedy against the poison of the Scorpion, and resists all venoms and poison. The seed or leaves taken in wine, is very good against the plague, and all infectious diseases, and is very good in pestilential fevers. The juice put into fresh or green wounds, doth quickly solder up the lips of them together, and is very effectual to heal all ulcers and sores in the mouth. The juice dropped into the eyes takes away the heat and inflammation of them. The distilled water of this herb, has the same properties, and may be used for the effects aforesaid.

Chamomile Flower Vintage Vector Illustration Royalty Free Cliparts, Vectors, And Stock Illustration. Image 37492921.


It is so well known every where, that it is but lost time and labour to describe it. The virtues thereof are as follow.

A decoction made of Camomile, and drank, takes away all pains and stitches in the side. The flowers of Camomile beaten, and made up into balls with Gill, drive away all sorts of agues, if the part grieved be anointed with that oil, taken from the flowers, from the crown of the head to the sole of the foot, and afterwards laid to sweat in his bed, and that he sweats well. This is Nechessor, an Egyptian’s, medicine. It is profitable for all sorts of agues that come either from phlegm, or melancholy, or from an inflammation of the bowels, being applied when the humours causing them shall be concocted; and there is nothing more profitable to the sides and region of the liver and spleen than it. The bathing with a decoction of Camomile takes away weariness, eases pains, to what part of the body soever they be applied. It comforts the sinews that are over-strained, mollifies all swellings: It moderately comforts all parts that have need of warmth, digests and dissolves whatsoever has need thereof, by a wonderful speedy property. It eases all pains of the cholic and stone, and all pains and torments of the belly, and gently provokes urine. The flowers boiled in posset-drink provokes sweat, and helps to expel all colds, aches, and pains whatsoever, and is an excellent help to bring down women’s courses. Syrup made of the juice of Camomile, with the flowers, in white wine, is a remedy against the jaundice and dropsy. The flowers boiled in lye, are good to wash the head, and comfort both it and the brain. The oil made of the flowers of Camomile, is much used against all hard swellings, pains or aches, shrinking of the sinews, or cramps, or pains in the joints, or any other part of the body. Being used in clysters, it helps to dissolve the wind and pains in the belly; anointed also, it helps stitches and pains in the sides.

Nechessor saith, the Egyptians dedicated it to the Sun, because it cured agues, and they were like enough to do it, for they were the arrantest apes in their religion that I ever read of. Bachinus, Bena, and Lobel, commend the syrup made of the juice of it and sugar, taken inwardly, to be excellent for the spleen. Also this is certain, that it most wonderfully breaks the stone: Some take it in syrup or decoction, others inject the juice of it into the bladder with a syringe. My opinion is, that the salt of it, taken half a dram in the morning in a little white or Rhenish wine, is better than either; that it is excellent for the stone, appears in this which I have seen tried, viz., That a stone that has been taken out of the body of a man being wrapped in Camomile, will in time dissolve, and in a little time too.

Vintage French Carrot Collage - Botanical Art Print – BelleBotanica


Garden Carrots are so well known, that they need no description; but because they are of less physical use than the wild kind (as indeed almost in all herbs the wild are the most effectual in physic, as being more powerful in operation than the garden kinds,) I shall therefore briefly describe the Wild Carrot.

Descript.] It grows in a manner altogether like the tame, but that the leaves and stalks are somewhat whiter and rougher. The stalks bear large tufts of white flowers, with a deep purple spot in the middle, which are contracted together when the seed begins to ripen, that the middle part being hollow and low, and the outward stalk rising high, makes the whole umbel to show like a bird’s nest. The root small, long, and hard, and unfit for meat, being somewhat sharp and strong.

Place.] The wild kind grows in divers parts of this land plentifully by the field-sides, and untilled places.

Time.] They flower and seed in the end of Summer.

Government and virtues.] Wild Carrots belong to Mercury, and therefore break wind, and remove stitches in the sides, provoke urine and women’s courses, and helps to break and expel the stone; the seed also of the same works the like effect, and is good for the dropsy, and those whose bellies are swelling with wind; helps the cholic, the stone in the kidneys, and rising of the mother; being taken in wine, or boiled in wine and taken, it helps conception. The leaves being applied with honey to running sores or ulcers, do cleanse them.

I suppose the seeds of them perform this better than the roots; and though Galen commended garden Carrots highly to break wind, yet experience teaches they breed it first, and we may thank nature for expelling[42] it, not they; the seeds of them expel wind indeed, and so mend what the root marrs.

Image result for chicory whole plant | Flower illustration, Vintage illustration, Botanical illustration


Descript.The garden Succory hath long and narrower leaves than the Endive, and more cut in or torn on the edges, and the root abides many years. It bears also blue flowers like Endive, and the seed is hardly distinguished from the seed of the smooth or ordinary Endive.

The wild Succory hath divers long leaves lying on the ground, very much cut in or torn on the edges, on both sides, even to the middle rib, ending in a point; sometimes it hath a rib down to the middle of the leaves, from among which rises up a hard, round, woody stalk, spreading into many branches, set with smaller and less divided leaves on them up to the tops, where stand the flowers, which are like the garden kind, and the seed is also (only take notice that the flowers of the garden kind are gone in on a sunny day, they being so cold, that they are not able to endure the beams of the sun, and therefore more delight in the shade) the root is white, but more hard and woody than the garden kind. The whole plant is exceedingly bitter.

Place.] This grows in many places of our land in waste untilled and barren fields. The other only in gardens.

Government and virtues.] It is an herb of Jupiter. Garden Succory, as it is more dry and less cold than Endive, so it opens more. An handful of the leaves, or roots boiled in wine or water, and a draught thereof drank fasting, drives forth choleric and phlegmatic humours, opens obstructions of the liver, gall and spleen; helps the yellow jaundice, the heat of the reins, and of the urine; the dropsy also; and those that have an evil disposition in their bodies, by reason of long sickness, evil diet, &c. which the Greeks call Cachexia. A decoction thereof made with wine, and drank, is[177] very effectual against long lingering agues; and a dram of the seed in powder, drank in wine, before the fit of the ague, helps to drive it away. The distilled water of the herb and flowers (if you can take them in time) hath the like properties, and is especially good for hot stomachs, and in agues, either pestilential or of long continuance; for swoonings and passions of the heart, for the heat and head-ache in children, and for the blood and liver. The said water, or the juice, or the bruised leaves applied outwardly, allay swellings, inflammations, St. Anthony’s fire, pushes, wheals, and pimples, especially used with a little vinegar; as also to wash pestiferous sores. The said water is very effectual for sore eyes that are inflamed with redness, for nurses’ breasts that are pained by the abundance of milk.

The wild Succory, as it is more bitter, so it is more strengthening to the stomach and liver.

Cut flowers Garlic chives Plant, flower, grass, plant Stem png | PNGEgg


Called also Rush Leeks, Chives, Civet, and Sweth.

Government and virtues.] I confess I had not added these, had it not been for a country gentleman, who by a letter certified me, that amongst other herbs, I had left these out; they are indeed a kind of leeks, hot and dry in the fourth degree as they are, and so under the dominion of Mars; If they be eaten raw, (I do not mean raw, opposite to roasted or boiled, but raw, opposite to chymical preparation) they send up very hurtful vapours to the brain, causing troublesome sleep, and spoiling the eye-sight, yet of them prepared by the art of the alchymist, may be made an excellent remedy for the stoppage of the urine.

Columbine Purple Flower Illustration - Old Design Shop Blog


These are so well known, growing almost in every garden, that I think I may save the expence of time in writing a description of them.

Time.] They flower in May, and abide not for the most part when June is past, perfecting their seed in the mean time.

Government and virtues.] It is also an herb of Venus. The leaves of Columbines are commonly used in lotions with good success for sore mouths and throats. Tragus saith, that a dram of the seed taken in wine with a little saffron, opens obstructions of the liver, and is good for the yellow jaundice, if the party after the taking thereof be laid to sweat well in bed. The seed also taken in wine causes a speedy delivery of women in childbirth: if one draught suffice not, let her drink the second, and it will be effectual: The Spaniards used to eat a piece of the root thereof in the morning fasting, many days together, to help them when troubled with the stone in the reins or kidneys.

Cucumber Vintage Illustration Royalty Free Cliparts, Vectors, And Stock Illustration. Image 33090708.


Government and virtues.There is no dispute to be made, but that they are under the dominion of the Moon, though they are so much cried out against for their coldness, and if they were but one degree colder they would be poison. The best of Galenists hold them to be cold and moist in the second degree, and then not so hot as either lettuce or purslain: They are excellently good for a hot stomach, and hot liver; the unmeasurable use of them fills the body full of raw humours, and so indeed the unmeasurable use of any thing else doth harm. The face being washed with their juice, cleanses the skin, and is excellently good for hot rheums in the eyes; the seed is excellently good to provoke urine, and cleanses the passages thereof when they are stopped: there is not a better remedy for ulcers in the bladder growing, than Cucumbers are; The usual course is, to use the seeds in emulsions, as they make almond milk; but a far better way (in my opinion) is this; When the season of the year is, take the Cucumbers and bruise them well, and distil the water from them, and let such as are troubled with ulcers in the bladder drink no other drink. The face being washed with the same water, cures the reddest face that is; it is also excellently good for sun-burning, freckles, and morphew.Free Vintage Image Cluster of Daisies | Old Design Shop Blog | Vintage flower tattoo, Vintage flowers wallpaper, Daisy art


These are so well known almost to every child, that I suppose it needless to write any description of them. Take therefore the virtues of them as follows.

Government and virtues.] The herb is under the sign Cancer, and under the dominion of Venus, and therefore excellently good for wounds in the breast, and very fitting to be kept both in oils, ointments, and plaisters, as also in syrup. The greater wild Daisy is a wound herb of good respect, often used in those drinks or salves that are for wounds, either inward or outward. The juice or distilled water of these, or the small Daisy, doth much temper the heat of choler, and refresh the liver, and the other inward parts. A decoction made of them and drank, helps to cure the wounds made in the hollowness of the breast. The same also cures all ulcers and pustules in the mouth or tongue, or in the secret parts. The leaves bruised and applied to the privities, or to any other parts that are swoln and hot, doth dissolve it, and temper the heat. A decoction made thereof, of Wallwort and Agrimony, and the places fomented and bathed therewith warm, gives great ease to them that are troubled with the palsy, sciatica, or the gout. The same also disperses and dissolves the knots or kernels that grow in the flesh of any part of the body, and bruises and hurts that come of[62] falls and blows; they are also used for ruptures, and other inward burnings, with very good success. An ointment made thereof doth wonderfully help all wounds that have inflammations about them, or by reason of moist humours having access unto them, are kept long from healing, and such are those, for the most part, that happen to joints of the arms or legs. The juice of them dropped into the running eyes of any, doth much help them.

Dandelion print. Botanical illustration. Dandelion poster. | Etsy


Descript.It is well known to have many long and deep gashed leaves, lying on the ground round about the head of the roots; the ends of each gash or jag, on both sides looking downwards towards the roots; the middle rib being white, which being broken, yields abundance of bitter milk, but the root much more; from among the leaves, which always abide green, arise many slender, weak, naked foot-stalks, every one of them bearing at the top one large yellow flower, consisting of many rows of yellow leaves, broad at the points, and nicked in with deep spots of yellow in the middle, which growing ripe, the green husk wherein the flowers stood turns itself down to the stalk, and the head of down becomes as round as a ball: with long seed underneath, bearing a part of the down on the head of every one, which together is blown away with the wind, or may be at once blown away with one’s mouth. The root growing downwards exceedingly deep, which being broken off within the ground, will yet shoot forth again, and will hardly be destroyed where it hath once taken deep root in the ground.

Place.] It grows frequently in all meadows and pasture-grounds.

Time.] It flowers in one place or other almost all the year long.

Government and virtues.] It is under the dominion of Jupiter. It is of an opening and cleansing quality, and therefore very effectual for the obstructions of the liver, gall and spleen, and the diseases that arise from them, as the jaundice and hypocondriac; it opens the passages of the urine both in young and old; powerfully cleanses imposthumes and inward ulcers in the urinary passage, and by its drying and temperate quality doth afterwards heal them; for which purpose the decoction of the roots or leaves in white wine, or the leaves chopped as pot-herbs, with a few Alisanders, and boiled in their broth, are very effectual. And whoever is drawing towards a consumption or an evil disposition of the whole body, called Cachexia, by the use hereof for some time together, shall find a wonderful help. It helps also to procure rest and sleep to bodies distempered by the heat of ague fits, or otherwise: The distilled water is effectual to drink in pestilential fevers, and to wash the sores.

You see here what virtues this common herb hath, and that is the reason the French and Dutch so often eat them in the Spring; and now if you look a little farther, you may see plainly without a pair of spectacles, that foreign physicians are not so selfish as ours are, but more communicative of the virtues of plants to people. Two Things To Understand About Growing Dill | Herbs, Botanical drawings, Plants


Descript.The common Dill grows up with seldom more than one stalk, neither so high, nor so great usually as Fennel, being round and fewer joints thereon, whose leaves are sadder, and somewhat long, and so like Fennel that it deceives many, but harder in handling, and somewhat thicker, and of a strong unpleasant scent: The tops of the stalks have four branches and smaller umbels of yellow flowers, which turn into small seed, somewhat flatter and thinner than Fennel seed. The root is somewhat small and woody, perishes every year after it hath borne seed: and is also unprofitable, being never put to any use.

Place.] It is most usually sown in gardens and grounds for the purpose, and is also found wild in many places.

Government and virtues.] Mercury has the dominion of this plant, and therefore to be sure it strengthens the brain. The Dill being boiled and drank, is good to ease swellings and pains; it also stays the belly and stomach from casting. The decoction therefore helps women that are troubled with the pains and windiness of the mother, if they sit therein. It stays the hiccough, being boiled in wine, and but smelled unto being tied in a cloth. The seed is of more use than the leaves, and more effectual to digest raw and vicious humours, and is used in medicines that serve to expel wind, and the pains proceeding therefrom. The seed, being roasted or fried, and used in oils or plasters, dissolve the imposthumes in the fundament; and dries up all moist ulcers, especially in the fundament; an oil made of Dill is effectual to warm or dissolve humours and imposthumes, and the pains, and to procure rest. The decoction of Dill, be it herb or seed (only if you boil the seed you must bruise it) in white wine, being drank, it is a gallant expeller of wind, and provoker of the terms.

Dock Rumex Buckwheat Meadow Dock Victorian Botanical Illustration Stock Illustration - Download Image Now - iStock


Many kinds of these are so well known, that I shall not trouble you with a description of them: My book grows big too fast.

Government and virtues.] All Docks are under Jupiter, of which the Red Dock, which is commonly called Bloodwort, cleanses the blood, and strengthens the liver; but the yellow Dock-root is best to be taken when either the blood or liver is affected by choler. All of them have a kind of cooling (but not all alike) drying quality, the sorrel being most cold, and the Blood-worts most drying. Of the Burdock, I have spoken already by itself. The seed of most of the other kinds, whether the gardens or fields, do stay lasks and fluxes of all sorts, the loathing of the stomach through choler, and is helpful for those that spit blood. The roots boiled in vinegar help the itch, scabs, and breaking out of the skin, if it be bathed therewith. The distilled water of the herb and roots have the same virtue, and cleanses the skin from freckles, morphews, and all other spots and discolourings therein.

All Docks being boiled with meat, make it boil the sooner: Besides Blood-wort is exceeding strengthening to the liver, and procures good blood, being as wholesome a pot herb as any growing in a garden; yet such is the nicety of our times, forsooth, that women will not put it into a pot, because it makes the pottage black; pride and ignorance (a couple of monsters in the creation) preferring nicety before health.

Feverfew (1865) | Tanacetum parthenium [as Matricaria parthe… | Flickr


Descript.Common Featherfew has large, fresh, green leaves, much torn or cut on the edges. The stalks are hard and round, set with many such like leaves, but smaller, and at the tops stand many single flowers, upon small foot stalks, consisting of many small white leaves standing round about a yellow thrum in the middle. The root is somewhat hard and short, with many strong fibres about it. The scent of the whole plant is very strong, and the taste is very bitter.

Place.] This grows wild in many places of the land, but is for the most part nourished in gardens.

Time.] It flowers in the months of June and July.

Government and virtues.] Venus commands this herb, and has commended it to succour her sisters (women) and to be a general strengthener of their wombs, and remedy such infirmities as a careless midwife hath there caused if they will but be[73] pleased to make use of her herb boiled in white wine, and drink the decoction; it cleanses the womb, expels the after-birth, and doth a woman all the good she can desire of an herb. And if any grumble because they cannot get the herb in winter, tell them, if they please, they may make a syrup of it in summer; it is chiefly used for the disease of the mother, whether it be the strangling or rising of the mother, or hardness, or inflammation of the same, applied outwardly thereunto. Or a decoction of the flowers in wine, with a little Nutmeg or Mace put therein, and drank often in a day, is an approved remedy to bring down women’s courses speedily, and helps to expel the dead birth and after-birth. For a woman to sit over the hot fumes of the decoction of the herb made in water or wine, is effectual for the same; and in some cases to apply the boiled herb warm to the privy parts. The decoction thereof made with some sugar, or honey put thereto, is used by many with good success to help the cough and stuffing of the chest, by colds, as also to cleanse the reins and bladder, and helps to expel the stone in them. The powder of the herb taken in wine, with some Oxymel, purges both choler and phlegm, and is available for those that are short winded, and are troubled with melancholy and heaviness, or sadness of spirits. It is very effectual for all pains in the head coming of a cold cause, the herb being bruised and applied to the crown of the head: As also for the vertigo, that is a running or swimming in the head. The decoction thereof drank warm, and the herb bruised with a few corns of Bay salt, and applied to the wrists before the coming of the ague fits, doth take them away. The distilled water takes away freckles, and other spots and deformities in the face. The herb bruised and heated on a tile, with some wine to moisten it, or fried with a little wine and oil in a frying-pan, and applied warm outwardly to the places, helps the wind and cholic in the lower part of the belly. It is an especial remedy against opium taken too liberally.2,660 Fennel Illustrations & Clip Art - iStock


Every garden affords this so plentifully, that it needs no description.

Government and virtues.] One good old fashion is not yet left off, viz. to boil Fennel with fish; for it consumes that phlegmatic humour, which fish most plentifully afford and annoy the body with, though few that use it know wherefore they do it; I suppose the reason of its benefit this way is because it is an herb of Mercury, and under Virgo, and therefore bears antipathy to Pisces. Fennel is good to break wind, to provoke urine, and ease the pains of the stone, and helps to break it. The leaves or seed, boiled in barley water and drank are good for nurses, to increase their milk, and make it more wholesome for the child. The leaves, or rather the seeds, boiled in water, stays the hiccough, and takes away the loathings which oftentimes happen to the stomachs of sick and feverish persons and allays the heat thereof. The seed boiled in wine and drank, is good for those that are bitten with serpents, or have eaten poisonous herbs, or mushrooms. The seed and the roots much more, help to open obstructions of the liver, spleen, and gall, and thereby help the painful and windy swellings of the spleen, and the yellow jaundice; as also the gout and cramps. The seed is of good use in medicines to help shortness of breath and wheezing by stopping of the lungs. It helps also to bring down the courses, and to cleanse the parts after delivery. The roots are of most use in physic drinks, and broth that are taken to cleanse the blood, to open obstructions of the liver, to provoke urine, and amend the ill colour in the face after sickness, and to cause a good habit through the body.[74] Both leaves, seeds, and roots thereof are much used in drink or broth, to make people more lean that are too fat. The distilled water of the whole herb, or the condensate juice dissolved, but especially the natural juice, that in some counties issues out hereof of its own accord, dropped into the eyes, cleanses them from mists and films that hinder the sight. The sweet Fennel is much weaker in physical uses than the common Fennel. The wild Fennel is stronger and hotter than the tame, and therefore most powerful against the stone, but not so effectual to encrease milk, because of its dryness.

Fig Fruit Botanical Digital Image Vintage Art Illustration | Etsy


To give a description of a tree so well known to every body that keep it in his garden, were needless. They prosper very well in our English gardens, yet are fitter for medicine than for any other profit which is gotten by the fruit of them.

Government and virtues.] The tree is under the dominion of Jupiter. The milk that issues out from the leaves or branches where they are broken off, being dropped upon warts, takes them away. The decoction[76] of the leaves is excellently good to wash sore heads with: and there is scarcely a better remedy for the leprosy than it is. It clears the face also of morphew, and the body of white scurf, scabs, and running sores. If it be dropped into old fretting ulcers, it cleanses out the moisture, and brings up the flesh; because you cannot have the leaves green all the year, you may make an ointment of them whilst you can. A decoction of the leaves being drank inwardly, or rather a syrup made of them, dissolves congealed blood caused by bruises or falls, and helps the bloody flux. The ashes of the wood made into an ointment with hog’s grease, helps kibes and chilblains. The juice being put into an hollow tooth, eases pain: as also pain and noise in the ears, being dropped into them; and deafness. An ointment made of the juice and hog’s grease, is an excellent remedy for the bitten of mad dogs, or other venomous beasts as most are. A syrup made of the leaves, or green fruit, is excellently good for coughs, hoarseness, or shortness of breath, and all diseases of the breast and lungs; it is also extremely good for the dropsy and falling sickness. They say that the Fig Tree, as well as the Bay Tree, is never hurt by lightning; as also, if you tie a bull, be he ever so mad, to a Fig Tree, he will quickly become tame and gentle. As for such figs as come from beyond sea, I have little to say, because I write not of exoticks.

YELLOW FLAG Yellow IRIS water flag or lever vintage lithograph | Etsy | Botanical illustration vintage, Botanical prints, Vintage botanical prints


Descript.This grows like the Flower-de-luce, but it has much longer and narrower sad green leaves, joined together in that fashion; the stalk also growing oftentimes as high, bearing small yellow flowers shaped like the Flower-de-luce, with three falling leaves, and other three arched that cover their bottoms; but instead of the three upright leaves, as the Flower-de-luce has, this has only three short pieces standing in their places, after which succeed thick and long three square heads, containing in each part somewhat big and flat seed, like those of the Flower-de-luce. The root is long and slender, of a pale brownish colour on the outside, and of a horseflesh colour on the inside, with many hard fibres thereat, and very harsh in taste.

Place.] It usually grows in watery ditches, ponds, lakes, and moor sides, which are always overflowed with water.

Time.] It flowers in July, and the seed is ripe in August.

Government and virtues.] It is under the dominion of the Moon. The root of this Water-flag is very astringent, cooling, and drying; and thereby helps all lasks and fluxes, whether of blood or humours, as bleeding at the mouth, nose, or other parts, bloody flux, and the immoderate flux of women’s courses. The distilled water of the whole herb, flowers and roots, is a sovereign good remedy for watering eyes, both to be dropped into them, and to have cloths or sponges wetted therein, and applied to the forehead: It also helps the spots and blemishes that happen in and about the eyes, or in any other parts: The said water fomented on swellings and hot inflammations of women’s breasts, upon cancers also, and those spreading ulcers called Noli me tangere, do much good: It helps also foul ulcers in the privities of man or woman; but an ointment made of the flowers is better for those external applications.

Purple Siberia iris flower wall decor- 1964 Vintage botanical art Mauve Iris flower wall decor Shabby chic botanical print Violet iris print | Botanical art, Iris flowers, Iris painting


It is so well known, being nourished up in most gardens, that I shall not need to spent time in writing a description thereof.

Time.] The flaggy kinds thereof have the most physical uses; the dwarf kinds thereof flowers in April, the greater sorts in May.

Government and virtues.] The herb is Luner. The juice or decoction of the green root of the flaggy kind of Flower-de-luce, with a little honey drank, doth purge and[79] cleanse the stomach of gross and tough phlegm, and choler therein; it helps the jaundice and the dropsy, evacuating those humours both upwards and downwards; and because it somewhat hurts the stomach, is not to be taken without honey and spikenard. The same being drank, doth ease the pains and torments of the belly and sides, the shaking of agues, the diseases of the liver and spleen, the worms of the belly, the stone in the reins, convulsions and cramps that come of old humours; it also helps those whose seed passes from them unawares: It is a remedy against the bitings and stingings of venomous creatures, being boiled in water and vinegar and drank. Boiled in water and drank, it provokes urine, helps the cholic, brings down women’s courses; and made up into a pessary with honey, and put up into the body, draws forth the dead child. It is much commended against the cough, to expectorate rough phlegm. It much eases pains in the head, and procures sleep; being put into the nostrils it procures sneezing, and thereby purges the head of phlegm. The juice of the root applied to the piles or hæmorrhoids, gives much ease. The decoction of the roots gargled in the mouth, eases the tooth-ache, and helps the stinking breath. Oil called Oleum Irinum, if it be rightly made of the great broad flag Flower-de-luce and not of the great bulbous blue Flower-de-luce, (as is used by some apothecaries) and roots of the same, of the flaggy kinds, is very effectual to warm and comfort all cold joints and sinews, as also the gout and sciatica, and mollifies, dissolves and consumes tumours and swellings in any part of the body, as also of the matrix; it helps the cramp, or convulsions of the sinews. The head and temples anointed therewith, helps the catarrh or thin rheum distilled from thence; and used upon the breast or stomach, helps to extenuate the cold tough phlegm; it helps also the pains and noise in the ears, and the stench of the nostrils. The root itself, either green or in powder, helps to cleanse, heal, and incarnate wounds, and to cover the naked bones with flesh again, that ulcers have made bare; and is also very good to cleanse and heal up fistulas and cankers that are hard to be cured.

Botanical Illustration - Digitalis Purpurea | Art nouveau flowers illustration, Botanical illustration vintage, Flower drawing


Descript.It has many long and broad leaves lying upon the ground dented upon the edges, a little soft or woolly, and of a hoary green colour, among which rise up sometimes sundry stalks, but one very often, bearing such leaves thereon from the bottom to the middle, from whence to the top it is stored with large and long hollow reddish purple flowers, a little more long and eminent at the lower edge, with some white spots within them, one above another with small green leaves at every one, but all of them turning their heads one way, and hanging downwards, having some threads also in the middle, from whence rise round heads, pointed sharp at the ends, wherein small brown seed lies. The roots are so many small fibres, and some greater strings among them; the flowers have no scent, but the leaves have a bitter hot taste.

Place.] It grows on dry sandy ground for the most part, and as well on the higher as the lower places under hedge-sides in almost every county of this land.

Time.] It seldom flowers before July, and the seed is ripe in August.

Government and virtues.] The plant is under the dominion of Venus, being of a gentle cleansing nature, and withal very friendly to nature. The herb is familiarly and frequently used by the Italians to heal any fresh or green wound, the leaves being but bruised and bound thereon; and the juice thereof is also used in old sores, to cleanse, dry, and heal them. The decoction hereof made up with some sugar or honey, is available to cleanse and purge the body both upwards and downwards, sometimes of tough phlegm and clammy humours, and to open obstructions of the liver and spleen. It has been found by experience to be available for the king’s evil, the herb bruised and applied, or an ointment made with the juice thereof, and so used; and a decoction of two handfuls thereof, with four ounces of Polipody in ale, has been found by late experience to cure divers of the falling sickness, that have been troubled with it above twenty years. I am confident that an ointment of it is one of the best remedies for scabby head that is.

Garlic, Vintage 1957 Botanical Print with Bible Verse Book Plate | Botanical drawings, Botanical prints, Garlic flower


The offensiveness of the breath of him that hath eaten Garlick, will lead you by the nose to the knowledge hereof, and (instead of a description) direct you to the place where it grows in gardens, which kinds are the best, and most physical.

Government and virtues.] Mars owns this herb. This was anciently accounted the poor man’s treacle, it being a remedy for all diseases and hurts (except those which itself breed.) It provokes urine, and women’s courses, helps the biting of mad dogs and other venomous creatures, kills worms in children, cuts and voids tough phlegm, purges the head, helps the lethargy, is a good preservative against, and a remedy for any plague, sore, or foul ulcers; takes away spots and blemishes in the skin, eases pains in the ears, ripens and breaks imposthumes, or other swellings. And for all those diseases the onions are as effectual. But the Garlick hath some more peculier virtues besides the former, viz. it hath a special quality to discuss inconveniences coming by corrupt agues or mineral vapours; or by drinking corrupt and stinking waters; as also by taking wolf-bane, henbane, hemlock, or other poisonous and dangerous herbs. It is also held good in hydropick diseases, the jaundice, falling sickness, cramps, convulsions, the piles or hæmorrhoids, or other cold diseases. Many authors quote many diseases this is good for; but conceal its vices. Its heat is very vehement, and all vehement hot things send up but ill-favoured vapours to the brain. In coleric men it will add fuel to the fire; in men oppressed by melancholy, it will attenuate the humour, and send up strong fancies, and as many strange visions to the head; therefore let it be taken inwardly with great moderation; outwardly you may make more bold with it.

1955 European Goldenrod, Botanical Print, Vintage Lithograph, Solidago virgaurea, Woundwo… | Botanical illustration watercolor, Botanical prints, Botanical drawings


Descript.This rises up with brownish small round stalks, two feet high, and sometimes more, having thereon many narrow and long dark green leaves, very seldom with any dents about the edges, or any stalks or white spots therein, yet they are sometimes so found divided at the tops into many small branches, with divers small yellow flowers on every one of them, all which are turned one way, and being ripe, do turn into down, and are carried away by the wind. The root consists of many small fibres, which grows not deep in the ground, but abides all the winter therein, shooting forth new branches every year, the old one lying down to the ground.

Place.] It grows in the open places of woods and copses, on both moist and dry grounds, in many places of this land.

Time.] It flowers about the month of July.

Government and virtues.] Venus claims the herb, and therefore to be sure it respects beauty lost. Arnoldus de Villa Nova commends it much against the stone in the reins and kidneys, and to provoke urine in abundance, whereby also the gravel and stone may be voided. The decoction of the herb, green or dry, or the distilled water thereof, is very effectual for inward bruises, as also to be outwardly applied, it stays bleeding in any part of the body, and of wounds; also the fluxes of humours, the bloody-flux, and women’s courses; and is no less prevalent in all ruptures or burstings, being drank inwardly, and outwardly applied. It is a sovereign wound herb, inferior to none, both for the inward and outward hurts; green wounds, old sores and ulcers, are quickly cured therewith. It also is of especial use in all lotions for sores or ulcers in the mouth, throat, or privy parts of man or woman. The decoction also helps to fasten the teeth that are loose in the gums.

Vintage Botanical Cannabis Marijuana Print w/ optional frame


This is so well known to every good housewife in the country, that I shall not need to write any description of it.

Time.] It is sown in the very end of March, or beginning of April, and is ripe in August or September.

Government and virtues.] It is a plant of Saturn, and good for something else, you see, than to make halters only. The seed of Hemp consumes wind, and by too much use thereof disperses it so much that it dries up the natural seed for procreation; yet, being boiled in milk and taken, helps such as have a hot dry cough. The Dutch make an emulsion out of the seed, and give it with good success to those that have the jaundice, especially in the beginning of the disease, if there be no ague accompanying it, for it opens obstructions of the gall, and causes digestion of choler. The emulsion or decoction of the seed stays lasks and continual fluxes, eases the cholic, and allays the troublesome humours in the bowels, and stays bleeding at the mouth, nose, or other places, some of the leaves being fried with the blood of them that bleed, and so given them to eat. It is held very good to kill the worms in men or beasts; and the juice dropped into the ears kills worms in them; and draws forth earwigs, or other living creatures gotten into them. The decoction of the root allays inflammations of the head, or any other parts: the herb itself, or the distilled water thereof doth the like. The decoction of the root eases the pains of the gout, the hard humours of knots in the joints, the pains and shrinking of the sinews, and the pains of the hips. The fresh juice mixed with a little oil and butter, is good for any place that hath been burnt with fire, being thereto applied.

21 How to Draw a Lenten Rose ideas | lenten rose, botanical illustration, botanical art


It is also called Setter-wort, Setter-grass, Bear’s-foot, Christmas-herb, and Christmas-flowers.

Descript.] It hath sundry fair green leaves rising from the root, each of them standing about an handful high from the earth; each leaf is divided into seven, eight, or nine parts, dented from the middle of the leaf to the point on both sides, abiding green all the Winter; about Christmas-time, if the weather be any thing temperate, the flowers appear upon foot stalks, also consisting of five large, round, white leaves a-piece, which sometimes are purple towards the edges, with many pale yellow thumbs in the middle; the seeds are divided into several cells, like those of Columbines, save only that they are greater; the seeds are in colour black, and in form long and round. The root consists of numberless blackish strings all united into one head. There is another Black Hellebore, which grows up and down in the woods very like this, but only that the leaves are smaller and narrower, and perish in the Winter, which this doth not.

Place.] The first is maintained in gardens. The second is commonly found in the woods in Northamptonshire.

Time.] The first flowers in December or January; the second in February or March.

Government and virtues.] It is an herb of Saturn, and therefore no marvel if it has some sullen conditions with it, and would be far safer, being purified by the art of the alchymist than given raw. If any have taken any harm by taking it, the common cure is to take goat’s milk: If you cannot get goat’s milk, you must make a shift with such as you can get. The roots are very effectual against all melancholy diseases, especially such as are of long standing, as quartan agues and madness; it helps the falling sickness, the leprosy, both the yellow and black jaundice, the gout, sciatica, and convulsions; and this was found out[94] by experience, that the root of that which grows wild in our country, works not so churlishly as those do which are brought from beyond sea, as being maintained by a more temperate air. The root used as a pessary, provokes the terms exceedingly; also being beaten into powder, and strewed upon foul ulcers, it consumes the dead flesh, and instantly heals them; nay, it will help gangrenes in the beginning. Twenty grains taken inwardly is a sufficient dose for one time, and let that be corrected with half so much cinnamon; country people used to rowel their cattle with it. If a beast be troubled with a cough, or have taken any poison, they bore a hole through the ear, and put a piece of the root in it, this will help him in 24 hours time. Many other uses farriers put it to which I shall forbear.



It is so well known to every child[100] almost, to grow in woods upon the trees, and upon the stone walls of churches, houses, &c. and sometimes to grow alone of itself, though but seldom.

Time.] It flowers not until July, and the berries are not ripe till Christmas, when they have felt Winter frosts.

Government and virtues.] It is under the dominion of Saturn. A pugil of the flowers, which may be about a dram, (saith Dioscorides) drank twice a day in red wine, helps the lask, and bloody flux. It is an enemy to the nerves and sinews, being much taken inwardly, but very helpful to them, being outwardly applied. Pliny saith, the yellow berries are good against the jaundice; and taken before one be set to drink hard, preserves from drunkenness, and helps those that spit blood; and that the white berries being taken inwardly, or applied outwardly, kills the worms in the belly. The berries are a singular remedy to prevent the plague, as also to free them from it that have got it, by drinking the berries thereof made into a powder, for two or three days together. They being taken in wine, do certainly help to break the stone, provoke urine, and women’s courses. The fresh leaves of Ivy, boiled in vinegar, and applied warm to the sides of those that are troubled with the spleen, ache, or stitch in the sides, do give much ease: The same applied with some Rosewater, and oil of Roses, to the temples and forehead, eases the head-ache, though it be of long continuance. The fresh leaves boiled in wine, and old filthy ulcers hard to be cured washed therewith, do wonderfully help to cleanse them. It also quickly heals green wounds, and is effectual to heal all burnings and scaldings, and all kinds of exulcerations coming thereby, or by salt phlegm or humours in other parts of the body. The juice of the berries or leaves snuffed up into the nose, purges the head and brain of thin rheum that makes defluxions into the eyes and nose, and curing the ulcers and stench therein; the same dropped into the ears helps the old and running sores of them, those that are troubled with the spleen, shall find much ease by continual drinking out of a cup made of Ivy, so as the drink may stand some small time therein before it be drank. Cato saith, That wine put into such a cup, will soak through it, by reason of the antipathy that is between them.

There seems to be a very great antipathy between wine and Ivy; for if one hath got a surfeit by drinking of wine, his speediest cure is to drink a draught of the same wine wherein a handful of Ivy leaves, being first bruised, have been boiled.

Herb Pharm Herb Illustrations | Herbs illustration, Botanical illustration, Botanical drawings


Descript.It has many thick, flat, and round leaves growing from the root, every one having a long footstalk, fastened underneath, about the middle of it, and a little unevenly weaved sometimes about the edges, of a pale green colour, and somewhat yellow on the upper side like a saucer; from among which arise one or more tender, smooth, hollow stalks half a foot high, with two or three small leaves thereon, usually not round as those below, but somewhat long, and divided at the edges: the tops are somewhat divided into long branches, bearing a number of flowers, set round about a long spike one above another, which are hollow and like a little bell of a whitish green colour, after which come small heads, containing very small brownish seed, which falling on the ground, will plentifully spring up before Winter, if it have moisture. The root is round and most usually smooth, greyish without, and white within, having small fibres at the head of the root, and bottom of the stalk.

Place.] It grows very plentifully in many places of this land, but especially in all the west parts thereof, upon stone and mud walls, upon rocks also, and in stony places upon the ground, at the bottom of old trees, and sometimes on the bodies of them that are decayed and rotten.

Time.] It usually flowers in the beginning of May, and the seed ripening quickly after, sheds itself; so that about the end of May, usually the stalks and leaves are withered, dry, and gone until September, then the leaves spring up again, and so abide all winter.

Government and virtues.] Venus challenges the herb under Libra. The juice or the distilled water being drank, is very effectual for all inflammations and unnatural heats, to cool a fainting hot stomach, a hot liver, or the bowels: the herb, juice, or distilled water thereof, outwardly applied, heals pimples, St. Anthony’s fire, and other outward heats. The said juice or water helps to heal sore kidneys, torn or fretted by the stone, or exulcerated within; it also provokes urine, is available for the dropsy, and helps to break the stone. Being used as a bath, or made into an ointment, it cools the painful piles or hæmorrhoidal veins. It is no less effectual to give ease to the pains of the gout, the sciatica, and helps the kernels or knots in the neck or[102] throat, called the king’s evil: healing kibes and chilblains if they be bathed with the juice, or anointed with ointment made thereof, and some of the skin of the leaf upon them: it is also used in green wounds to stay the blood, and to heal them quickly.

Free Lavender Botanical Print - The Graphics Fairy | Vintage art prints, Botanical prints, Botanical drawings


Being an inhabitant almost in every garden, it is so well known, that it needs no description.

Time.] It flowers about the end of June, and beginning of July.

Government and virtues.] Mercury owns the herb; and it carries his effects very potently. Lavender is of a special good use for all the griefs and pains of the head and brain that proceed of a cold cause, as the apoplexy, falling-sickness, the dropsy, or sluggish malady, cramps, convulsions, palsies, and often faintings. It strengthens the stomach, and frees the liver and spleen from obstructions, provokes women’s courses, and expels the dead child and after-birth. The flowers of Lavender steeped in wine,[104] helps them to make water that are stopped, or are troubled with the wind or cholic, if the place be bathed therewith. A decoction made with the flowers of Lavender, Hore-hound, Fennel and Asparagus root, and a little Cinnamon, is very profitably used to help the falling-sickness, and the giddiness or turning of the brain: to gargle the mouth with the decoction thereof is good against the tooth-ache. Two spoonfuls of the distilled water of the flowers taken, helps them that have lost their voice, as also the tremblings and passions of the heart, and faintings and swooning, not only being drank, but applied to the temples, or nostrils to be smelled unto; but it is not safe to use it where the body is replete with blood and humours, because of the hot and subtile spirits wherewith it is possessed. The chymical oil drawn from Lavender, usually called Oil of Spike, is of so fierce and piercing a quality, that it is cautiously to be used, some few drops being sufficient, to be given with other things, either for inward or outward griefs

9 Lettuce Clipart + Green Vegetables! | Vintage gardening, Garden images, Vintage garden


It is so well known, being generally used as a Sallad-herb, that it is altogether needless to write any description thereof.

Government and virtues.] The Moon owns them, and that is the reason they cool and moisten what heat and dryness Mars causeth, because Mars has his fall in Cancer; and they cool the heat because the Sun rules it, between whom and the Moon is a reception in the generation of men, as you may see in my Guide for Women. The juice of Lettuce mixed or boiled with Oil of Roses, applied to the forehead and temples procures sleep, and eases the headache proceeding of an hot cause: Being eaten boiled, it helps to loosen the belly.[105] It helps digestion, quenches thirst, increases milk in nurses, eases griping pains in the stomach or bowels, that come of choler. Applied outwardly to the region of the heart, liver or reins, or by bathing the said places with the juice of distilled water, wherein some white Sanders, or red Roses are put; not only represses the heat and inflammations therein, but comforts and strengthens those parts, and also tempers the heat of urine. Galen advises old men to use it with spice; and where spices are wanting, to add Mints, Rochet, and such like hot herbs, or else Citron Lemon, or Orange seeds, to abate the cold of one and heat of the other. The seed and distilled water of the Lettuce work the same effects in all things; but the use of Lettuce is chiefly forbidden to those that are short-winded, or have any imperfection in the lungs, or spit blood.

Painting of two white petaled flowers, Botanical illustration Botany Water lilies Flower Nelumbo nucifera, water lilies, essay, plant Stem, lilium png | PNGWing


Of these there are two principally noted kinds, viz. the White and the Yellow.

Descript.] The White Lily has very large and thick dark green leaves lying on the water, sustained by long and thick foot-stalks, that arise from a great, thick, round, and long tuberous black root spongy or loose, with many knobs thereon, green on the outside, but as white as snow within, consisting of divers rows of long and somewhat thick and narrow leaves, smaller and thinner the more inward they be, encompassing a head with many yellow threads or thrums in the middle; where, after they are past, stand round Poppy-like heads, full of broad oily and bitter seed.

The yellow kind is little different from the former, save only that it has fewer leaves on the flowers, greater and more shining seed, and a whitish root, both within and without. The root of both is somewhat sweet in taste.

Place.] They are found growing in great pools, and standing waters, and sometimes in slow running rivers, and lesser ditches of water, in sundry places of this land.

Time.] They flower most commonly about the end of May, and their seed is ripe in August.

Government and virtues.] The herb is under the dominion of the Moon, and therefore cools and moistens like the former. The leaves and flowers of the Water Lilies are cold and moist, but the roots and seeds are cold and dry; the leaves do cool all inflammations, both outward and inward heat of agues; and so doth the flowers also, either by the syrup or conserve; the syrup helps much to procure rest, and to settle the brain of frantic persons, by cooling the hot distemperature of the head. The seed as well as the root is effectual to stay fluxes of blood or humours, either of wounds or of the belly; but the roots are most used, and more effectual to cool, bind, and restrain all fluxes in man or woman. The root is likewise very good for those whose urine is hot and sharp, to be boiled in wine and water, and the decoction drank. The distilled water of the flowers is very effectual for all the diseases aforesaid, both inwardly taken, and outwardly applied; and is much commended to take away freckles, spots, sunburn, and morphew from the face, or other parts of the body. The oil made of the flowers, as oil of Roses is made, is profitably used to cool hot tumours, and to ease the pains, and help the sores.

Vintage Lily of the Valley Floral Download Printable Wall Art | Etsy


Called also Conval Lily, Male Lily, and Lily Confancy.

Descript.] The root is small, and creeps far in the ground, as grass roots do. The leaves are many, against which rises up a stalk half a foot high, with many white flowers, like little bells with turned edges[106] of a strong, though pleasing smell; the berries are red, not much unlike those of Asparagus.

Place.] They grow plentifully upon Hampstead-Heath, and many other places in this nation.

Time.] They flower in May, and the seed is ripe in September.

Government and virtues.] It is under the dominion of Mercury, and therefore it strengthens the brain, recruits a weak memory, and makes it strong again: The distilled water dropped into the eyes, helps inflammations there; as also that infirmity which they call a pin and web. The spirit of the flowers distilled in wine, restores lost speech, helps the palsy, and is excellently good in the apoplexy, comforts the heart and vital spirits. Gerrard saith, that the flowers being close stopped up in a glass, put into an ant-hill, and taken away again a month after, ye shall find a liquor in the glass, which, being outwardly applied, helps the gout.

Common White Lady, The American Flora, 1855 | Botanical drawings, Botanical illustration, Botanical art


It were in vain to describe a plant so commonly known in every one’s garden; therefore I shall not tell you what they are, but what they are good for.

Government and virtues.] They are under the dominion of the Moon, and by antipathy to Mars expel poison; they are excellently good in pestilential fevers, the roots being bruised and boiled in wine, and the decoction drank; for it expels the venom to the exterior parts of the body: The juice of it being tempered with barley meal, baked, and so eaten for ordinary bread, is an excellent cure for the dropsy: An ointment made of the root, and hog’s grease, is excellently good for scald heads, unites the sinews when they are cut, and cleanses ulcers. The root boiled in any convenient decoction, gives speedy delivery to women in travail, and expels the afterbirth. The root roasted, and mixed with a little hog’s grease, makes a gallant poultice to ripen and break plague-sores. The ointment is excellently good for swellings in the privities, and will cure burnings and scaldings without a scar, and trimly deck a blank place with hair.

Blue Mallow Flowers Malva sylvestris 50 grams | Etsy | Botanical illustration, Flower illustration, Mallow flower


Common Mallows are generally so well known that they need no description.

Our common Marshmallows have divers soft hairy white stalks, rising to be three or four feet high, spreading forth many branches, the leaves whereof are soft and hairy, somewhat less than the other Mallow leaves, but longer pointed, cut (for the most part) into some few divisions, but deep. The flowers are many, but smaller also than the other Mallows, and white, or tending to a bluish colour. After which come such long, round cases and seeds, as in the other Mallows. The roots are many and long, shooting from one head, of the bigness of a thumb or finger, very pliant, tough, and being like liquorice, of a whitish yellow colour on the outside, and more whitish within, full of a slimy juice, which being laid in water, will thicken, as if it were a jelly.

Place.] The common Mallows grow in every county of this land. The common Marsh-mallows in most of the salt marshes, from Woolwich down to the sea, both on the Kentish and Essex shores, and in divers other places of this land.

Time.] They flower all the Summer months, even until the Winter do pull them down.

Government and virtues.] Venus owns them both. The leaves of either of the sorts, both specified, and the roots also boiled in wine or water, or in broth with Parsley or Fennel roots, do help to open the body, and are very convenient in hot agues, or other distempers of the body, to apply the leaves so boiled warm to the belly. It not only voids hot, choleric, and other offensive humours, but eases the pains and torments of the belly coming thereby; and are therefore used in all clysters conducing to those purposes. The same used by nurses procures them store of milk. The decoction of the seed of any of the common Mallows made in milk or wine, doth marvellously help excoriations, the phthisic, pleurisy, and other diseases of the chest and lungs, that proceed of hot causes, if it be continued taking for some time together. The leaves and roots work the same effects. They help much also in the excoriations of the bowels, and hardness of the mother, and in all hot and sharp diseases thereof. The juice drank in wine, or the decoction of them therein, do help women to a speedy and easy delivery. Pliny saith, that whosoever takes a spoonful of any of the Mallows, shall that day be free from all diseases that may come unto him; and that it is especially good for the falling-sickness. The syrup also and conserve made of the flowers, are very effectual for the same diseases, and to open the body, being costive. The leaves bruised, and laid to the eyes with a little honey, take away the imposthumations of them. The leaves bruised or rubbed upon any place stung with bees, wasps, or the like, presently take away the pain, redness, and swelling that rise thereupon. And Dioscorides saith, The decoction of the roots and leaves helps all sorts of poison, so as the poison be presently voided by vomit. A poultice made of the leaves boiled and bruised, with some bean or barley flower, and oil of Roses added, is an especial remedy against all hard tumours and inflammations, or imposthumes, or swellings of the privities, and other parts, and eases the pains of them; as also against the hardness of the liver or spleen, being applied to the places. The juice of Mallows boiled in old oil and applied, takes away all roughness of the skin, as also the scurf, dandriff, or dry scabs in the head, or other parts, if they be anointed therewith, or washed with the decoction, and preserves the hair from falling off. It is also effectual[112] against scaldings and burnings, St. Anthony’s fire, and all other hot, red, and painful swellings in any part of the body. The flowers boiled in oil or water (as every one is disposed) whereunto a little honey and allum is put, is an excellent gargle to wash, cleanse or heal any sore mouth or throat in a short space. If the feet be bathed or washed with the decoction of the leaves, roots, and flowers, it helps much the defluxions of rheum from the head; if the head be washed therewith, it stays the falling and shedding of the hair. The green leaves (saith Pliny) beaten with nitre, and applied, draw out thorns or prickles in the flesh.

The Marshmallows are more effectual in all the diseases before mentioned: The leaves are likewise used to loosen the belly gently, and in decoctions or clysters to ease all pains of the body, opening the strait passages, and making them slippery, whereby the stone may descend the more easily and without pain, out of the reins, kidneys, and bladder, and to ease the torturing pains thereof. But the roots are of more special use for those purposes, as well for coughs, hoarseness, shortness of breath and wheezings, being boiled in wine, or honeyed water, and drank. The roots and seeds hereof boiled in wine or water, are with good success used by them that have excoriations in the bowels, or the bloody flux, by qualifying the violence of sharp fretting humours, easing the pains, and healing the soreness. It is profitably taken by them that are troubled with ruptures, cramps, or convulsions of the sinews; and boiled in white wine, for the imposthumes by the throat, commonly called the king’s evil, and of those kernels that rise behind the ears, and inflammations or swellings in women’s breasts. The dried roots boiled in milk and drank, is especially good for the chin-cough. Hippocrates used to give the decoction of the roots, or the juice thereof, to drink, to those that are wounded, and ready to faint through loss of blood, and applied the same, mixed with honey and rosin, to the wounds. As also, the roots boiled in wine to those that have received any hurt by bruises, falls, or blows, or had any bone or member out of joint, or any swelling-pain, or ache in the muscles, sinews or arteries. The muscilage of the roots, and of Linseed and Fenugreek put together, is much used in poultices, ointments, and plaisters, to molify and digest all hard swellings, and the inflammation of them, and to ease pains in any part of the body. The seed either green or dry, mixed with vinegar, cleanses the skin of morphew, and all other discolourings being boiled therewith in the Sun.

You may remember that not long since there was a raging disease called the bloody-flux; the college of physicians not knowing what to make of it, called it the inside plague, for their wits were at Ne plus ultra about it: My son was taken with the same disease, and the excoriation of his bowels was exceeding great; myself being in the country, was sent for up, the only thing I gave him, was Mallows bruised and boiled both in milk and drink, in two days (the blessing of God being upon it) it cured him. And I here, to shew my thankfulness to God, in communicating it to his creatures, leave it to posterity.

Flower Clip Art "Aztec Marigold" Digital Download, Autumn Botanical Illustration Image for Invitations, Crafts, Collages, Wall


These being so plentiful in every garden, and so well known that they need no description.

Time.] They flower all the Summer long, and sometimes in Winter, if it be mild.

Government and virtues.] It is an herb of the Sun, and under Leo. They strengthen the heart exceedingly, and are very expulsive, and a little less effectual in the small-pox and measles than saffron. The juice of Marigold leaves mixed with vinegar, and any hot swelling bathed with it, instantly gives ease, and assuages it. The flowers, either green or dried, are much used in possets, broths, and drink, as a comforter of the heart and spirits, and to expel any malignant or pestilential quality which might annoy them. A plaister made with the dry flowers in powder, hog’s-grease, turpentine, and rosin, applied to the breast, strengthens and succours the heart infinitely in fevers, whether pestilential or not.

Botanical illustration of a stalk of peppermint with purple flowers and leaves. | Peppermint plants, Herbs illustration, Botanical illustration


Of all the kinds of Mint, the Spear Mint, or Heart Mint, being most usual, I shall only describe as follows:

Descript.] Spear Mint has divers round stalks, and long but narrowish leaves set thereon, of a dark green colour. The flowers stand in spiked heads at the tops of the branches, being of a pale blue colour. The smell or scent thereof is somewhat near unto Bazil; it encreases by the root under ground as all the others do.

Place.] It is an usual inhabitant in gardens; and because it seldom gives any good seed, the seed is recompensed by the plentiful increase of the root, which being once planted in a garden, will hardly be rid out again.

Time.] It flowers not until the beginning of August, for the most part.

Government and virtues.] It is an herb of Venus. Dioscorides saith it hath a healing, binding and drying quality, and therefore the juice taken in vinegar, stays bleeding: It stirs up venery, or bodily lust; two or three branches thereof taken in the juice of four pomegranates, stays the hiccough, vomiting, and allays the choler. It dissolves imposthumes being laid to with barley-meal. It is good to repress the milk in women’s breasts, and for such as[118] have swollen, flagging, or great breasts. Applied with salt, it helps the biting of a mad dog; with mead and honeyed water, it eases the pains of the ears, and takes away the roughness of the tongue, being rubbed thereupon. It suffers not milk to curdle in the stomach, if the leaves thereof be steeped or boiled in it before you drink it. Briefly it is very profitable to the stomach. The often use hereof is a very powerful medicine to stay women’s courses and the whites. Applied to the forehead and temples, it eases the pains in the head, and is good to wash the heads of young children therewith, against all manner of breakings-out, sores or scabs, therein. It is also profitable against the poison of venomous creatures. The distilled water of Mint is available to all the purposes aforesaid, yet more weakly. But if a spirit thereof be rightly and chymically drawn, it is much more powerful than the herb itself. Simeon Sethi saith, it helps a cold liver, strengthens the belly, causes digestion, stays vomits and hiccough; it is good against the gnawing of the heart, provokes appetite, takes away obstructions of the liver, and stirs up bodily lust; but therefore too much must not be taken, because it makes the blood thin and wheyish, and turns it into choler, and therefore choleric persons must abstain from it. It is a safe medicine for the biting of a mad dog, being bruised with salt and laid thereon. The powder of it being dried and taken after meat, helps digestion, and those that are splenetic. Taken with wine, it helps women in their sore travail in child-bearing. It is good against the gravel and stone in the kidneys, and the stranguary. Being smelled unto, it is comfortable for the head and memory. The decoction hereof gargled in the mouth, cures the gums and mouth that are sore, and mends an ill-savoured breath; as also the Rue and Coriander, causes the palate of the mouth to turn to its place, the decoction being gargled and held in the mouth.

The virtues of the Wild or Horse Mint, such as grow in ditches (whose description I purposely omitted, in regard they are well known) are serviceable to dissolve wind in the stomach, to help the cholic, and those that are short-winded, and are an especial remedy for those that have veneral dreams and pollutions in the night, being outwardly applied. The juice dropped into the ears eases the pains of them, and destroys the worms that breed therein. They are good against the venemous biting of serpents. The juice laid on warm, helps the king’s evil, or kernels in the throat. The decoction or distilled water helps a stinking breath, proceeding from corruption of the teeth, and snuffed up the nose, purges the head. Pliny saith, that eating of the leaves hath been found by experience to cure the leprosy, applying some of them to the face, and to help the scurf or dandriff of the head used with vinegar. They are extremely bad for wounded people; and they say a wounded man that eats Mint, his wound will never be cured, and that is a long day.


What to Know about Mistletoe Facts and Mythology | Botanical drawings, Botanical illustration, Botanical painting


Descript.This rises up from the branch or arm of the tree whereon it grows, with a woody stem, putting itself into sundry branches, and they again divided into many other smaller twigs, interlacing themselves one within another, very much covered with a greyish green bark, having two leaves set at every joint, and at the end likewise, which are somewhat long and narrow, small at the bottom, but broader towards the end. At the knots or joints of the boughs and branches grow small yellow flowers, which run into small, round, white, transparent berries, three or four together, full of a glutinous moisture, with a blackish seed in each of them, which was never yet known[119] to spring, being put into the ground, or any where else to grow.

Place.] It grows very rarely on oaks with us; but upon sundry others as well timber as fruit trees, plentifully in woody groves, and the like, through all this land.

Time.] It flowers in the Spring-time, but the berries are not ripe until October, and abides on the branches all the Winter, unless the blackbirds, and other birds, do devour them.

Government and virtues.] This is under the dominion of the Sun, I do not question; and can also take for granted, that which grows upon oaks, participates something of the nature of Jupiter, because an oak is one of his trees; as also that which grows upon pear trees, and apple trees, participates something of his nature, because he rules the tree it grows upon, having no root of its own. But why that should have most virtues that grows upon oaks I know not, unless because it is rarest and hardest to come by; and our college’s opinion is in this contrary to scripture, which saith, God’s tender mercies are over all his works; and so it is, let the college of physicians walk as contrary to him as they please, and that is as contrary as the east to the west. Clusius affirms that which grows upon pear trees to be as prevalent, and gives order, that it should not touch the ground after it is gathered; and also saith, that, being hung about the neck, it remedies witchcraft. Both the leaves and berries of Misselto do heat and dry, and are of subtle parts; the birdlime doth molify hard knots, tumours, and imposthumes; ripens and discusses them, and draws forth thick as well as thin humours from the remote parts of the body, digesting and separating them. And being mixed with equal parts of rozin and wax, doth molify the hardness of the spleen, and helps old ulcers and sores. Being mixed with Sandaric and Orpiment, it helps to draw off foul nails; and if quick-lime and wine lees be added thereunto, it works the stronger. The Misselto itself of the oak (as the best) made into powder, and given in drink to those that have the falling sickness, does assuredly heal them, as Matthiolus saith: but it is fit to use it for forty days together. Some have so highly esteemed it for the virtues thereof, that they have called it Lignum Sanctiæ Crucis, Wood of the Holy Cross, believing it helps the falling sickness, apoplexy and palsy very speedily, not only to be inwardly taken, but to be hung at their neck. Tragus saith, that the fresh wood of any Misselto bruised, and the juice drawn forth and dropped in the ears that have imposthumes in them, doth help and ease them within a few days.

Vintage Tree Print, White Mulberry, Botanical Book Plate 77, Ornamental, Nature, Landscape, Framing, 1969, Choc | Tree print, Vintage tree, Mulberry leaf


This is so well known where it grows, that it needs no description.

Time.] It bears fruit in the months of July and August.

Government and virtues.] Mercury rules the tree, therefore are its effects variable as his are. The Mulberry is of different parts; the ripe berries, by reason of their sweetness and slippery moisture, opening the body, and the unripe binding it, especially when they are dried, and then they are good to stay fluxes, lasks, and the abundance of women’s courses. The bark of the root kills the broad worms in the body. The juice, or the syrup made of the juice of the berries, helps all inflammations or sores in the mouth, or throat, and palate of the mouth when it is fallen down. The juice of the leaves is a remedy against the biting of serpents, and for those that have taken aconite. The leaves beaten with vinegar, are good to lay on any place that is burnt with fire. A decoction made of the bark and leaves is good to wash the mouth and teeth when they ache. If the root be a little slit or cut, and a small hole made in the ground next thereunto, in the Harvest-time, it will give out a certain juice, which being hardened the next day, is of good use to help the tooth-ache, to dissolve knots, and purge the belly. The leaves of Mulberries are said to stay bleeding at the mouth or nose, or the bleeding of the piles, or of a wound, being bound unto the places. A branch of the tree taken when the moon is at the full, and bound to the wrists of a woman’s arm, whose courses come down too much, doth stay them in a short space.

1954 Great Mullein, Antique Botanical Print, Vintage Lithograph, Verbascum densiflorum, Verbascum thapsiforme, Velvet Plant, Botany, Garden | Botanical prints, Antique botanical print, Vintage botanical prints


Descript.Common White Mullein has many fair, large, woolly white leaves, lying next the ground, somewhat larger than broad, pointed at the end, and as it were dented about the edges. The stalk rises up to be four or five feet high, covered over with such like leaves, but less, so that no stalk can be seen for the multitude of leaves thereon up to the flowers, which come forth on all sides of the stalk, without any branches for the most part, and are many set together in a long spike, in some of a yellow colour, in others more pale, consisting of five round pointed leaves, which afterwards have small[124] round heads, wherein is small brownish seed contained. The root is long, white, and woody, perishing after it hath borne seed.

Place.] It grows by way-sides and lanes, in many places of this land.

Time.] It flowers in July or thereabouts.

Government and virtues.] It is under the dominion of Saturn. A small quantity of the root given in wine, is commended by Dioscorides, against lasks and fluxes of the belly. The decoction hereof drank, is profitable for those that are bursten, and for cramps and convulsions, and for those that are troubled with an old cough. The decoction thereof gargled, eases the pains of the tooth-ache. And the oil made by the often infusion of the flowers, is of very good effect for the piles. The decoction of the root in red wine or in water, (if there be an ague) wherein red hot steel hath been often quenched, doth stay the bloody-flux. The same also opens obstructions of the bladder and reins. A decoction of the leaves hereof, and of Sage, Marjoram, and Camomile flowers, and the places bathed therewith, that have sinews stiff with cold or cramps, doth bring them much ease and comfort. Three ounces of the distilled water of the flowers drank morning and evening for some days together, is said to be the most excellent remedy for the gout. The juice of the leaves and flowers being laid upon rough warts, as also the powder of the dried roots rubbed on, doth easily take them away, but doth no good to smooth warts. The powder of the dried flowers is an especial remedy for those that are troubled with the belly-ache, or the pains of the cholic. The decoction of the root, and so likewise of the leaves, is of great effect to dissolve the tumours, swellings, or inflammations of the throat. The seed and leaves boiled in wine, and applied, draw forth speedily thorns or splinters gotten into the flesh, ease the pains, and heal them also. The leaves bruised and wrapped in double papers, and covered with hot ashes and embers to bake a while, and then taken forth and laid warm on any blotch or boil happening in the groin or share, doth dissolve and heal them. The seed bruised and boiled in wine, and laid on any member that has been out of joint, and newly set again, takes away all swelling and pain thereof.

MUSTARD FAMILY -Herb- Botanical Print by Isabel Adams Antique Print | Botanical prints, Botanical drawings, Botanical illustration


Descript.Our common Mustard hath large and broad rough leaves, very much jagged with uneven and unorderly gashes, somewhat like turnip leaves, but less and rougher. The stalk rises to be more than a foot high, and sometimes two feet high, being round, rough, and branched at the top, bearing such like leaves thereon as grow below, but lesser, and less divided, and divers yellow flowers one above another at the tops, after which come small rough pods, with small, lank, flat ends, wherein is contained round yellowish seed, sharp, hot, and biting upon the tongue. The root is small, long, and woody when it bears stalks, and perishes every year.

Place.] This grows with us in gardens only, and other manured places.

Time.] It is an annual plant, flowering in July, and the seed is ripe in August.

Government and virtues.] It is an excellent sauce for such whose blood wants clarifying, and for weak stomachs, being an herb of Mars, but naught for choleric people, though as good for such as are aged, or troubled with cold diseases. Aries claims something to do with it, therefore it strengthens the heart, and resists poison. Let such whose stomachs are so weak they cannot digest their meat, or appetite it, take of Mustard-seed a dram, Cinnamon as much, and having beaten them to powder, and half as much Mastich in powder, and with gum Arabic dissolved in rose-water, make[125] it up into troches, of which they may take one of about half a dram weight an hour or two before meals; let old men and women make much of this medicine, and they will either give me thanks, or shew manifest ingratitude. Mustard seed hath the virtue of heat, discussing, ratifying, and drawing out splinters of bones, and other things of the flesh. It is of good effect to bring down women’s courses, for the falling-sickness or lethargy, drowsy forgetful evil, to use it both inwardly and outwardly, to rub the nostrils, forehead and temples, to warm and quicken the spirits; for by the fierce sharpness it purges the brain by sneezing, and drawing down rheum and other viscous humours, which by their distillations upon the lungs and chest, procure coughing, and therefore, with some, honey added thereto, doth much good therein. The decoction of the seed made in wine, and drank, provokes urine, resists the force of poison, the malignity of mushrooms, and venom of scorpions, or other venomous creatures, if it be taken in time; and taken before the cold fits of agues, alters, lessens, and cures them. The seed taken either by itself, or with other things, either in an electuary or drink, doth mightily stir up bodily lust, and helps the spleen and pains in the sides, and gnawings in the bowels; and used as a gargle draws up the palate of the mouth, being fallen down; and also it dissolves the swellings about the throat, if it be outwardly applied. Being chewed in the mouth it oftentimes helps the tooth-ache. The outward application hereof upon the pained place of the sciatica, discusses the humours, and eases the pains, as also the gout, and other joint aches; and is much and often used to ease pains in the sides or loins, the shoulder, or other parts of the body, upon the plying thereof to raise blisters, and cures the disease by drawing it to the outward parts of the body. It is also used to help the falling off the hair. The seed bruised mixed with honey, and applied, or made up with wax, takes away the marks and black and blue spots of bruises, or the like, the roughness or scabbiness of the skin, as also the leprosy, and lousy evil. It helps also the crick in the neck. The distilled water of the herb, when it is in the flower, is much used to drink inwardly to help in any of the diseases aforesaid, or to wash the mouth when the palate is down, and for the disease of the throat to gargle, but outwardly also for scabs, itch, or other the like infirmities, and cleanses the face from morphew, spots, freckles, and other deformities.


Descript.Common Garden Nep shoots forth hard four-square stalks, with a hoariness on them, a yard high or more, full of branches, bearing at every joint two broad leaves like balm, but longer pointed, softer, white, and more hoary, nicked about the edges, and of a strong sweet scent. The flowers grow in large tufts at the tops of the branches, and underneath them likewise on the stalks many together, of a whitish purple colour. The roots are composed of many long strings or fibres, fastening themselves stronger in the ground, and abide with green leaves thereon all the winter.

Place.] It is only nursed up in our gardens.

Time.] And it flowers in July, or thereabouts.

Government and virtues.] It is an herb of Venus. Nep is generally used for women to procure their courses, being taken inwardly or outwardly, either alone, or with other convenient herbs in a decoction to bathe them, or sit over the hot fumes thereof; and by the frequent use thereof, it takes away barrenness, and the wind, and pains of the mother. It is also used in pains of the head coming of any cold cause, catarrhs, rheums, and for swimming and giddiness thereof, and is of special use for the windiness of the stomach and belly. It is effectual for any cramp, or cold aches, to dissolve cold and wind that afflict the place, and is used for colds, coughs, and shortness of breath. The juice thereof drank in wine, is profitable for those that are bruised by an accident. The green herb bruised and applied to the fundament and lying there two or three hours, eases the pains of the piles; the juice also being made up into an ointment, is effectual for the same purpose. The head washed with a decoction thereof, it takes away scabs,[127] and may be effectual for other parts of the body also.

n208_w1150 | Botanical drawings, Botanical illustration, Plant illustration


Nettles are so well known, that they need no description; they may be found by feeling, in the darkest night.

Government and virtues.] This is also an herb Mars claims dominion over. You know Mars is hot and dry, and you know as well that Winter is cold and moist; then you may know as well the reason why Nettle-tops eaten in the Spring consume the phlegmatic superfluities in the body of man, that the coldness and moistness of Winter hath left behind. The roots or leaves boiled, or the juice of either of them, or both made into an electuary with honey and sugar, is a safe and sure medicine to open the pipes and passages of the lungs, which is the cause of wheezing and shortness of breath, and helps to expectorate tough phlegm, as also to raise the imposthumed pleurisy; and spend it by spitting; the same helps the swelling of the almonds of the throat, the mouth and throat being gargled therewith. The juice is also effectual to settle the palate of the mouth in its place, and to heal and temper the inflammations and soreness of the mouth and throat. The decoction of the leaves in wine, being drank, is singularly good to provoke women’s courses, and settle the suffocation, strangling of the mother, and all other diseases thereof; it is also applied outwardly with a little myrrh. The same also, or the seed provokes urine, and expels the gravel and stone in the reins or bladder, often proved to be effectual in many that have taken it. The same kills the worms in children, eases pains in the sides, and dissolves the windiness in the spleen, as also in the body, although others think it only powerful to provoke venery. The juice of the leaves taken two or three days together, stays bleeding at the mouth. The seed being drank, is a remedy against the stinging of venomous creatures, the biting of mad dogs, the poisonous qualities of Hemlock, Henbane, Nightshade, Mandrake, or other such like herbs that stupify or dull the senses; as also the lethargy, especially to use it outwardly, to rub the forehead or temples in the lethargy, and the places stung or bitten with beasts, with a little salt. The distilled water of the herb is also effectual (though not so powerful) for the diseases aforesaid; as for outward wounds and sores to wash them, and to cleanse the skin from morphew, leprosy, and other discolourings thereof. The seed or leaves bruised, and put into the nostrils, stays the bleeding of them, and takes away the flesh growing in them called polypus. The juice of the leaves, or the decoction of them, or of the root, is singularly good to wash either old, rotten, or stinking sores or fistulous, and gangrenes, and such as fretting, eating, or corroding scabs, manginess, and itch, in any part of the body, as also green wounds, by washing them therewith, or applying the green herb bruised thereunto, yea, although the flesh were separated from the bones; the same applied to our wearied members, refresh them, or to place those that have been out of joint, being first set up again, strengthens, dries, and comforts them, as also those places troubled with aches and gouts, and the defluxion of humours upon the joints or sinews; it eases the pains, and dries or dissolves the defluctions. An ointment made of the juice, oil, and a little wax, is singularly good to rub cold and benumbed members. An handful of the leaves of green Nettles, and another of Wallwort, or Deanwort, bruised and applied simply themselves to the gout, sciatica, or joint aches in any part, hath been found to be an admirable help thereunto.

Onion Chart Vegetable Food Botanical Lithograph Illustration | Etsy


They are so well known, that I need not spend time about writing a description of them.

Government and virtues.] Mars owns them, and they have gotten this quality, to draw any corruption to them, for if you peel one, and lay it upon a dunghill, you shall find it rotten in half a day, by drawing putrefaction to it; then, being bruised and applied to a plague sore, it is very probable it will do the like. Onions are flatulent, or windy; yet they do somewhat provoke appetite, increase thirst, ease the belly and bowels, provoke women’s courses, help the biting of a mad dog, and of other venomous creatures, to be used with honey and rue, increase sperm, especially the seed of them. They also kill worms in children if they drink the water fasting wherein they have been steeped all night. Being roasted under the embers, and eaten with honey or sugar and oil, they much conduce to help an inveterate cough, and expectorate the cough phlegm. The juice being snuffed up into the nostrils, purges the head, and helps the lethargy, (yet the often eating them is said to procure pains in the head.) It hath been held by divers country people a great preservative against infection, to eat Onions fasting with bread and salt: As also to make a great Onion hollow, filling the place with good treacle, and after to roast it well under the embers, which, after taking away the outermost skin thereof, being beaten together, is a sovereign salve for either plague or sore, or any other putrefied ulcer. The juice of Onions is good for either scalding or burning by fire, water, or gunpowder, and used with vinegar, takes away all blemishes, spots and marks in the skin: and dropped in the ears, eases the pains and noise of them. Applied also with figs beaten together, helps to ripen and break imposthumes, and other sores.

Leeks are as like them in quality, as the pome-water is like an apple: They are a remedy against a surfeit of mushrooms, being baked under the embers and taken, and being boiled and applied very warm, help the piles. In other things they have the same property as the Onions, although not so effectual.

Fool's parsley. From Köhler's Medizinal-Pflanzen, vol. 3. Source: Biodiversity Heritage Library / Missou… | Botanical drawings, Vintage art prints, Botanical prints


This is so well known, that it needs no description.

Government and virtues.] It is under the dominion of Mercury; is very comfortable to the stomach; helps to provoke urine and women’s courses, to break wind both in the stomach and bowels, and doth a little open the body, but the root much more. It opens obstructions both of liver and spleen, and is therefore accounted one of the five opening roots. Galen commended it against the falling sickness, and to provoke urine mightily; especially if the roots be boiled, and eaten like Parsnips. The seed is effectual to provoke urine and women’s courses, to expel wind, to break the stone, and ease the pains and torments thereof; it is also effectual against the venom of any poisonous creature, and the danger that comes to them that have the lethargy, and is as good against the cough. The distilled water of Parsley is a familiar medicine with nurses to give their children when they are troubled with wind in the stomach or belly which they call the frets; and is also much available to them that are of great years. The leaves of Parsley laid to the eyes that are inflamed with heat, or swollen, doth much help them, if it be used with bread or meal; and being fried with butter, and applied to women’s breasts that are hard through the curdling of their milk, it abates the hardness quickly; and also takes away black and blue marks coming of bruises or falls. The juice thereof dropped into the ears with a little wine, eases the pains. Tragus sets down an excellent medicine to help the jaundice and falling sickness, the dropsy, and stone in the kidneys, in this manner: Take of the seed of Parsley, Fennel, Annise and Carraways, of each an ounce; of the roots of Parsley, Burnet, Saxifrage, and Carraways, of each an ounce and an half; let the seeds be bruised, and the roots washed and cut small; let them lie all night to steep in a bottle of white wine, and in the morning be boiled in a close earthen vessel until a third part or more be wasted; which being strained and cleared, take four ounces thereof morning and evening first and last, abstaining from drink after it for three hours. This opens obstructions of the liver and spleen, and expels the dropsy and jaundice by urine.

Fleaworts Or Plantain Medicinal Plant Stock Illustration - Download Image Now - iStock


This grows usually in meadows and fields, and by path sides, and is so well known, that it needs no description.

Time.] It is in its beauty about June, and the seed ripens shortly after.

Government and virtues.] It is true, Misaldus and others, yea, almost all astrology-physicians, hold this to be an herb of Mars, because it cures the diseases of the head and privities, which are under the houses of Mars, Aries, and Scorpio: The truth is, it is under the command of Venus, and cures the head by antipathy to Mars, and the privities by sympathy to Venus; neither is there hardly a martial disease but it cures.

The juice of Plantain clarified and drank for divers days together, either of itself, or in other drink, prevails wonderfully against all torments or excoriations in the intestines or bowels, helps the distillations of rheum from the head, and stays all manner of fluxes, even women’s courses, when they flow too abundantly. It is good to stay spitting of blood and other bleedings at the mouth, or the making of foul and bloody water, by reason of any ulcer in the reins or bladder, and also stays the too free bleeding of wounds. It is held an especial remedy for those that are troubled with the phthisic, or consumption of the lungs, or ulcers of the lungs, or coughs that come of heat. The decoction or powder of the roots or seeds, is much more binding for all the purposes aforesaid than the leaves. Dioscorides saith, that three roots boiled in wine and taken, helps the tertain agues, and for the quartan agues, (but letting the number pass as fabulous) I conceive the decoction of divers roots may be effectual. The herb (but especially the seed) is held to be profitable against the dropsy, the falling-sickness, the yellow jaundice, and stoppings of the liver and reins. The roots of Plantain, and Pellitory of Spain, beaten into powder, and put into the hollow teeth, takes away the pains of them. The clarified juice, or distilled water, dropped into the eyes, cools the inflammations in them, and takes away the pin and web; and dropped into the ears, eases the pains in them, and heals and removes the heat. The same also with the juice of Houseleek is profitable against all inflammations and breakings out of the skin, and against burnings and scaldings by fire and water. The juice or decoction made either of itself, or other things of the like nature, is of much use and good effect for old and hollow ulcers that are hard to be cured, and for cankers and sores in the mouth or privy parts of man or woman; and helps also the pains of the piles in the fundament. The juice mixed with oil of roses, and the temples and forehead anointed therewith, eases the pains of the head proceeding from heat, and helps lunatic and frantic persons very much; as also the[142] biting of serpents, or a mad dog. The same also is profitably applied to all hot gouts in the feet or hands, especially in the beginning. It is also good to be applied where any bone is out of joint, to hinder inflammations, swellings, and pains that presently rise thereupon. The powder of the dried leaves taken in drink, kills worms of the belly; and boiled in wine, kills worms that breed in old and foul ulcers. One part of Plantain water, and two parts of the brine of powdered beef, boiled together and clarified, is a most sure remedy to heal all spreading scabs or itch in the head and body, all manner of tetters, ringworms, the shingles, and all other running and fretting sores. Briefly, the Plantains are singularly good wound herbs, to heal fresh or old wounds or sores, either inward or outward.

Vintage Style Watercolor Illustration Of Red Poppies Stock Illustration - Download Image Now - iStock


Of this I shall describe three kinds, viz. the White and Black of the Garden, and the Erratic Wild Poppy, or Corn Rose.

Descript.] The White Poppy hath at first four or five whitish green leaves lying upon the ground, which rise with the stalk, compassing it at the bottom of them, and are very large, much cut or torn on the edges, and dented also besides: The stalk, which is usually four or five feet high, hath sometimes no branches at the top, and usually but two or three at most, bearing every one but one head wrapped up in a thin skin, which bows down before it is ready to blow, and then rising, and being broken, the flowers within it spreading itself open, and consisting of four very large, white, round leaves, with many whitish round threads in the middle, set about a small, round, green head, having a crown, or star-like cover at the head thereof, which growing ripe, becomes as large as a great apple, wherein are contained a great number of small round seeds, in several partitions or divisions next unto the shell, the middle thereof remaining hollow, and empty. The whole plant, both leaves, stalks, and heads, while they are fresh, young, and green, yield a milk when they are broken, of an unpleasant bitter taste, almost ready to provoke casting, and of a strong heady smell, which being condensed, is called Opium. The root is white and woody, perishing as soon as it hath given ripe seed.

The Black Poppy little differs from the former, until it bears its flower, which is somewhat less, and of a black purplish colour, but without any purple spots in the bottom of the leaf. The head of the seed is much less than the former, and opens itself a little round about the top, under the crown, so that the seed, which is very black, will fall out, if one turn the head thereof downward.

The wild Poppy, or Corn Rose, hath long and narrow leaves, very much cut in on the[145] edges into many divisions, of a light green colour, sometimes hairy withal. The stalk is blackish and hairy also, but not so tall as the garden kind, having some such like leaves thereon to grow below, parted into three or four branches sometimes, whereon grow small hairy heads bowing down before the skin break, wherein the flower is inclosed, which when it is fully blown open, is of a fair yellowish red or crimson colour, and in some much paler, without any spot in the bottom of the leaves, having many black soft threads in the middle, compassing a small green head, which when it is ripe, is not bigger than one’s little finger’s end, wherein is contained much black seeds smaller than that of the garden. The root perishes every year, and springs again of its own sowing. Of this kind there is one lesser in all parts thereof, and differs in nothing else.

Place.] The garden kinds do not naturally grow wild in any place, but all are sown in gardens where they grow.

The Wild Poppy or Corn Rose, is plentifully enough, and many times too much so in the corn fields of all counties through this land, and also on ditch banks, and by hedge sides. The smaller wild kind is also found in corn fields, and also in some other places, but not so plentifully as the former.

Time.] The garden kinds are usually sown in the spring, which then flower about the end of May, and somewhat earlier, if they spring of their own sowing.

The wild kind flower usually from May until July, and the seed of them is ripe soon after the flowering.

Government and virtues.] The herb is Lunar, and of the juice of it is made opium; only for lucre of money they cheat you, and tell you it is a kind of tear, or some such like thing, that drops from Poppies when they weep, and that is somewhere beyond the seas, I know not where beyond the Moon. The garden Poppy heads with seeds made into a syrup, is frequently, and to good effect used to procure rest, and sleep, in the sick and weak, and to stay catarrhs and defluxions of thin rheums from the head into the stomach and lungs, causing a continual cough, the fore-runner of a consumption; it helps also hoarseness of the throat, and when one have lost their voice, which the oil of the seed doth likewise. The black seed boiled in wine, and drank, is said also to dry the flux of the belly, and women’s courses. The empty shells, or poppy heads, are usually boiled in water, and given to procure rest and sleep: so doth the leaves in the same manner; as also if the head and temples be bathed with the decoction warm, or with the oil of Poppies, the green leaves or the heads bruised and applied with a little vinegar, or made into a poultice with barley-meal or hog’s grease, cools and tempers all inflammations, as also the disease called St. Anthony’s fire. It is generally used in treacle and mithridate, and in all other medicines that are made to procure rest and sleep, and to ease pains in the head as well as in other parts. It is also used to cool inflammations, agues, or frenzies, or to stay defluxions which cause a cough, or consumptions, and also other fluxes of the belly or women’s courses; it is also put into hollow teeth, to ease the pain, and hath been found by experience to ease the pains of the gout.

The Wild Poppy, or Corn Rose (as Matthiolus saith) is good to prevent the falling-sickness. The syrup made with the flower, is with good effect given to those that have the pleurisy; and the dried flowers also, either boiled in water, or made into powder and drank, either in the distilled water of them, or some other drink, works the like effect. The distilled water of the flowers is held to be of much good use against surfeits, being drank evening and morning;[146] It is also more cooling than any of the other Poppies, and therefore cannot but be as effectual in hot agues, frenzies, and other inflammations either inward or outward. Galen saith, The seed is dangerous to be used inwardly.

Pin by I for on Vintage Graphic Design | Flower prints art, Rose art, Flower drawing


I hold it altogether needless to trouble the reader with a description of any of these, since both the garden Roses, and the Roses of the briars are well enough known: take therefore the virtues of them as follows; And first I shall begin with the garden kinds.

Government and virtues.] What a pother have authors made with Roses! What a racket have they kept? I shall add, red Roses are under Jupiter, Damask under Venus, White under the Moon, and Provence under the King of France. The white and red Roses are cooling and drying, and yet the white is taken to exceed the red in both the properties, but is seldom used inwardly in any medicine: The bitterness in the Roses when they are fresh, especially the juice, purges choler, and watery humours; but being dried, and that heat which caused the bitterness being consumed, they have then a binding and astringent quality: Those also that are not full blown, do both cool and bind more than those that are full blown, and the white Rose more than the Red. The decoction of red Roses made with wine and used, is very good for the head-ache, and pains in the eyes, ears, throat, and gums; as also for the fundament, the lower part of the belly and the matrix, being bathed or put into them. The same decoction with the Roses remaining in it, is profitably applied to the region of the heart to ease the inflammation therein; as also St. Anthony’s fire, and other diseases of the stomach. Being dried and beaten to powder, and taken in steeled wine or water, it helps to stay women’s courses. The yellow threads in the middle of the Roses (which are erroneously called the Rose Seed) being powdered and drank in the distilled water of Quinces, stays the overflowing of women’s courses, and doth wonderfully stay the defluctions of rheum upon the gums and teeth, preserving them from corruption, and fastening them if they be loose, being washed and gargled therewith, and some vinegar of Squills added thereto. The heads with the seed being used in powder, or in a decoction, stays the lask and spitting of blood. Red Roses do strengthen the heart, the stomach and the liver, and the retentive faculty: They mitigate the pains that[153] arise from heat, assuage inflammations, procure rest and sleep, stay both whites and reds in women, the gonorrhea, or running of the reins, and fluxes of the belly: the juice of them doth purge and cleanse the body from choler and phlegm. The husks of the Roses, with the beards and nails of the Roses, are binding and cooling, and the distilled water of either of them is good for the heat and redness in the eyes, and to stay and dry up the rheums and watering of them. Of the Red Roses are usually made many compositions, all serving to sundry good uses, viz. Electuary of Roses, Conserve, both moist and dry, which is more usually called Sugar of roses, Syrup of dry Roses, and Honey of Roses. The cordial powder called Diarrhoden Abbatis, and Aromatica Rosarum. The distilled Water of Roses, Vinegar of Roses, Ointment, and Oil of Roses, and the Rose leaves dried, are of great use and effect. To write at large of every one of these, would make my book smell too big, it being sufficient for a volume of itself, to speak fully of them. But briefly, the Electuary is purging, whereof two or three drams taken by itself in some convenient liquor, is a purge sufficient for a weak constitution, but may be increased to six drams, according to the strength of the patient. It purges choler without trouble, it is good in hot fevers, and pains of the head arising from hot choleric humours, and heat in the eyes, the jaundice also, and joint-aches proceeding of hot humours. The moist Conserve is of much use, both binding and cordial; for until it be about two years old, it is more binding than cordial, and after that, more cordial than binding. Some of the younger Conserve taken with mithridate mixed together, is good for those that are troubled with distillations of rheum from the brain to the nose, and defluctions of rheum into the eyes; as also for fluxes and lasks of the belly; and being mixed with the powder of mastich, is very good for the gonorrhea, and for the looseness of the humours in the body. The old Conserve mixed with Aromaticum Rosarum, is a very good cordial against faintings, swoonings, weakness, and tremblings of the heart, strengthens, both it and a weak stomach, helps digestion, stays casting, and is a very good preservative in the time of infection. The dry Conserve, which is called the Sugar of Roses, is a very good cordial to strengthen the heart and spirits; as also to stay defluctions. The syrup of dried red Roses strengthens a stomach given to casting, cools an over-heated liver, and the blood in agues, comforts the heart, and resists putrefaction and infection, and helps to stay lasks and fluxes. Honey of Roses is much used in gargles and lotions to wash sores, either in the mouth, throat, or other parts, both to cleanse and heal them, and to stay the fluxes of humours falling upon them. It is also used in clysters both to cool and cleanse. The cordial powders, called Diarrhoden Abbatis and Aromaticum Rosarum, do comfort and strengthen the heart and stomach, procure an appetite, help digestion, stay vomiting, and are very good for those that have slippery bowels, to strengthen them, and to dry up their moisture. Red Rose-water is well known, and of familiar use on all occasions, and better than Damask Rose-water, being cooling and cordial, refreshing, quickening the weak and faint spirits, used either in meats or broths, to wash the temples, to smell at the nose, or to smell the sweet vapours thereof out of a perfuming pot, or cast into a hot fire shovel. It is also of much good use against the redness and inflammations of the eyes to bathe them therewith, and the temples of the head; as also against pain and ache, for which purpose also Vinegar of Roses is of much good use, and to procure rest and sleep, if some thereof, and Rose-water together, be used to smell unto, or the[154] nose and temples moistened therewith, but more usually to moisten a piece of a red Rose-cake, cut for the purpose, and heated between a double folded cloth, with a little beaten nutmeg, and poppy-seed strewed on the side that must lie next to the forehead and temples, and bound so thereto all night. The ointment of Roses is much used against heat and inflammations in the head, to anoint the forehead and temples, and being mixt with Unguentum Populneum, to procure rest: it is also used for the heat of the liver, the back and reins, and to cool and heal pushes, wheals, and other red pimples rising in the face or other parts. Oil of Roses is not only used by itself to cool any hot swellings or inflammations, and to bind and stay fluxes of humours unto sores, but is also put into ointments and plaisters that are cooling and binding, and restraining the flux of humours. The dried leaves of the red Roses are used both inwardly and outwardly, both cooling, binding, and cordial, for with them are made both AromaticumRosarumDiarrhoden Abbatis, and Saccharum Rosarum, each of whose properties are before declared. Rose leaves and mint, heated and applied outwardly to the stomach, stays castings, and very much strengthen a weak stomach; and applied as a fomentation to the region of the liver and heart, do much cool and temper them, and also serve instead of a Rose-cake (as is said before) to quiet the over-hot spirits, and cause rest and sleep. The syrup of Damask Roses is both simple and compound, and made with Agaric. The simple solutive syrup is a familiar, safe, gentle and easy medicine, purging choler, taken from one ounce to three or four, yet this is remarkable herein, that the distilled water of this syrup should notably bind the belly. The syrup with Agaric is more strong and effectual, for one ounce thereof by itself will open the body more than the other, and works as much on phlegm as choler. The compound syrup is more forcible in working on melancholic humours; and available against the leprosy, itch, tetters, &c. and the French disease: Also honey of Roses solutive is made of the same infusions that the syrup is made of, and therefore works the same effect, both opening and purging, but is oftener given to phlegmatic than choleric persons, and is more used in clysters than in potions, as the syrup made with sugar is. The conserve and preserved leaves of those Roses are also operative in gently opening the belly.

The simple water of Damask Roses is chiefly used for fumes to sweeten things, as the dried leaves thereof to make sweet powders, and fill sweet bags; and little use they are put to in physic, although they have some purging quality; the wild Roses also are few or none of them used in physic, but are generally held to come near the nature of the manured Roses. The fruit of the wild briar, which are called Hips, being thoroughly ripe, and made into a conserve with sugar, besides the pleasantness of the taste, doth gently bind the belly, and stay defluctions from the head upon the stomach, drying up the moisture thereof, and helps digestion. The pulp of the hips dried into a hard consistence, like to the juice of the liquorice, or so dried that it may be made into powder and taken into drink, stays speedily the whites in women. The briar ball is often used, being made into powder and drank, to break the stone, to provoke urine when it is stopped, and to ease and help the cholic; some appoint it to be burnt, and then taken for the same purpose. In the middle of the balls are often found certain white worms, which being dried and made into powder, and some of it drank, is found by experience of many to kill and drive forth the worms of the belly.

Rosemary Plant Photograph by Natural History Museum, London/science Photo Library


Our garden Rosemary is so well known, that I need not describe it.

Time.] It flowers in April and May with us, sometimes again in August.

Government and virtues.] The Sun claims privilege in it, and it is under the celestial Ram. It is an herb of as great use with us in these days as any whatsoever, not only for physical but civil purposes. The physical use of it (being my present task) is very much used both for inward and outward diseases, for by the warming and comforting heat thereof it helps all cold diseases, both of the head, stomach, liver, and belly. The decoction thereof in wine, helps the cold distillations of rheum into the eyes, and all other cold diseases of the head and brain, as the giddiness or swimmings therein, drowsiness or dullness of the mind and senses like a stupidness, the dumb palsy, or loss of speech, the lethargy, and fallen-sickness, to be both drank, and the temples bathed therewith. It helps the pains in the gums and teeth, by rheum falling into them, not by putrefaction, causing an evil smell from them, or a stinking breath. It helps a weak memory, and quickens the senses. It is very comfortable to the stomach in all the cold griefs thereof, helps both retention of meat, and digestion, the decoction or powder being taken in wine. It is a remedy for the windiness in the stomach, bowels, and spleen, and expels it powerfully. It helps those that are liver-grown, by opening the obstructions thereof. It helps dim eyes, and procures a clear sight, the flowers thereof being taken all the while it is flowering every morning fasting, with bread and salt. Both Dioscorides and Galen say, That if a decoction be made thereof with water, and they that have the yellow jaundice exercise their bodies directly after the taking thereof, it will certainly cure them. The flowers and conserve made of them,[156] are singularly good to comfort the heart, and to expel the contagion of the pestilence; to burn the herb in houses and chambers, corrects the air in them. Both the flowers and leaves are very profitable for women that are troubled with the whites, if they be daily taken. The dried leaves shred small, and taken in a pipe, as tobacco is taken, helps those that have any cough, phthisic, or consumption, by warming and drying the thin distillations which cause those diseases. The leaves are very much used in bathings; and made into ointments or oil, are singularly good to help cold benumbed joints, sinews, or members. The chymical oil drawn from the leaves and flowers, is a sovereign help for all the diseases aforesaid, to touch the temples and nostrils with two or three drops for all the diseases of the head and brain spoken of before; as also to take one drop, two, or three, as the case requires, for the inward griefs: Yet must it be done with discretion, for it is very quick and piercing, and therefore but a little must be taken at a time. There is also another oil made by insolation in this manner: Take what quantity you will of the flowers, and put them into a strong glass close stopped, tie a fine linen cloth over the mouth, and turn the mouth down into another strong glass, which being set in the sun, an oil will distil down into the lower glass, to be preserved as precious for divers uses, both inward and outward, as a sovereign balm to heal the disease before-mentioned, to clear dim sights, and to take away spots, marks, and scars in the skin.

white sage - Chris Chapman | Botanical drawings, Botanical illustration, Botanical illustration vintage


Our ordinary garden Sage needs no description.

Time.] It flowers in or about July.

Government and virtues.] Jupiter claims this, and bids me tell you, it is good for the liver, and to breed blood. A decoction of the leaves and branches of Sage made and drank, saith Dioscorides, provokes urine, brings down women’s courses, helps to expel the dead child, and causes the hair to become black. It stays the bleeding of wounds, and cleanses foul ulcers. Three spoonfuls of the juice of Sage taken fasting, with a little honey, doth presently stay the spitting or casting of blood of them that are in a consumption. These pills are much commended; Take of spikenard, ginger, of each two drams; of the seed of Sage toasted at the fire, eight drams; of long pepper, twelve drams; all these being brought into powder, put thereto so much juice of Sage as may make them into a mass of pills, taking a dram of them every morning fasting, and so likewise at night, drinking a little pure water after them. Matthiolus saith, it is very profitable for all manner of pains in the head coming of cold and rheumatic humours: as also for all pains of the joints, whether inwardly or outwardly, and therefore helps the falling-sickness, the lethargy, such as are dull and heavy of spirit, the palsy; and is of much use in all defluctions of rheum from the head, and for the diseases of the chest or breast. The leaves of Sage and nettles bruised together, and laid upon the imposthume that rises behind the ears, doth assuage it much. The juice of Sage taken in warm water, helps a hoarseness and a cough. The leaves sodden in wine, and laid upon the place affected with the palsy, helps much, if the decoction be drank; Also Sage taken with wormwood is good for the bloody-flux. Pliny saith, it procures women’s courses, and stays them coming down too fast: helps the stinging and biting of serpents, and kills the worms that breed in the ear, and in sores. Sage is of excellent use to help the memory, warming and quickening the senses; and the conserve made of the flowers is used to the same purpose, and also for all the former recited diseases. The juice of Sage drank with vinegar, hath been of good use in time of the plague at all times. Gargles likewise are made with Sage, rosemary, honey-suckles, and plantain, boiled in wine or water, with some honey or allum put thereto, to wash sore mouths and throats, cankers, or the secret parts of man or woman, as need requires. And with other hot and comfortable herbs, Sage is boiled to bathe the body and the legs in the Summer time, especially to warm cold joints, or sinews, troubled with the palsy and cramp, and to comfort and strengthen the parts. It is much commended against the stitch, or pains in the side coming of wind, if the place be fomented warm with the decoction thereof in wine, and the herb also after boiling be laid warm thereunto.

Pin by mirella díaz on Art of Science and Nature... | Botanical drawings, Botanical illustration, Plant illustration


Descript.The common Solomon’s Seal rises up with a round stalk half a yard high, bowing or bending down to the ground, set with single leaves one above another, somewhat large, and like the leaves of the lily-convally, or May-lily, with an eye of bluish upon the green, with some ribs therein, and more yellowish underneath. At the foot of every leaf, almost from the bottom up to the top of the stalk, come forth small, long, white and hollow pendulous flowers, somewhat like the flowers of May-lily, but ending in five long points, for the most part two together, at the end of a long foot-stalk, and sometimes but one, and sometimes also two stalks, and flowers at the foot of a leaf, which are without any scent at all, and stand on the top of the stalk. After they are past, come in their places small round berries great at the first, and blackish green, tending to blueness when they are ripe, wherein lie small, white, hard, and stony seeds. The root is of the thickness of one’s finger or thumb, white and knotted in some places, a flat round circle representing a Seal, whereof it took the name, lying along under the upper crust of the earth, and not growing downward, but with many fibres underneath.

Place.] It is frequent in divers places of this land; as, namely in a wood two miles from Canterbury, by Fish-Pool Hill, as also in Bushy Close belonging to the parsonage of Alderbury, near Clarendon, two miles from Salisbury: in Cheffon wood, on Chesson Hill, between Newington and Sittingbourn in Kent, and divers other places in Essex, and other counties.

Time.] It flowers about May: The root abides and shoots a-new every year.

Government and virtues.] Saturn owns the plant, for he loves his bones well. The root of Solomon’s Seal is found by experience to be available in wounds, hurts, and outward sores, to heal and close up the lips of those that are green, and to dry up and restrain the flux of humours to those that are old. It is singularly good to stay vomitings and bleeding wheresoever, as also all fluxes in man or woman; also, to knit any joint, which by weakness uses to be often out of place, or will not stay in long when it is set; also to knit and join broken bones in any part of the body, the roots being bruised and applied to the places; yea, it hath been found by experience, and the decoction of the root in wine, or the bruised root put into wine or other drink, and after a night’s infusion, strained forth hard and drank, hath helped both man and beast, whose bones hath been[164] broken by any occasion, which is the most assured refuge of help to people of divers counties of the land that they can have. It is no less effectual to help ruptures and burstings, the decoction in wine, or the powder in broth or drink, being inwardly taken, and outwardly applied to the place. The same is also available for inward or outward bruises, falls or blows, both to dispel the congealed blood, and to take away both the pains and the black and blue marks that abide after the hurt. The same also, or the distilled water of the whole plant, used to the face, or other parts of the skin, cleanses it from morphew, freckles, spots, or marks whatsoever, leaving the place fresh, fair, and lovely; for which purpose it is much used by the Italian Dames.

790 Botanical ѕтуℓє ideas in 2021 | botanical, botanical prints, botanical illustration


These are so well known through this land, that they need no description.

Time.] They flower in May ordinarily, and the fruit is ripe shortly after.

Government and virtues.] Venus owns the herb. Strawberries, when they are green, are cool and dry; but when they are ripe, they are cool and moist: The berries are excellently good to cool the liver, the blood,[176] and the spleen, or an hot choleric stomach; to refresh and comfort the fainting spirits, and quench thirst: They are good also for other inflammations; yet it is not amiss to refrain from them in a fever, lest by their putrifying in the stomach they increase the fits. The leaves and roots boiled in wine and water, and drank, do likewise cool the liver and blood, and assuage all inflammations in the reins and bladder, provoke urine, and allay the heat and sharpness thereof. The same also being drank stays the bloody flux and women’s courses, and helps the swelling of the spleen. The water of the Berries carefully distilled, is a sovereign remedy and cordial in the panting and beating of the heart, and is good for the yellow jaundice. The juice dropped into foul ulcers, or they washed therewith, or the decoction of the herb and root, doth wonderfully cleanse and help to cure them. Lotions and gargles for sore mouths, or ulcers therein, or in the privy parts or elsewhere, are made with the leaves and roots thereof; which is also good to fasten loose teeth, and to heal spungy foul gums. It helps also to stay catarrhs, or defluctions of rheum in the mouth, throat, teeth, or eyes. The juice or water is singularly good for hot and red inflamed eyes, if dropped into them, or they bathed therewith. It is also of excellent property for all pushes, wheals and other breakings forth of hot and sharp humours in the face and hands, and other parts of the body, to bathe them therewith, and to take away any redness in the face, or spots, or other deformities in the skin, and to make it clear and smooth. Some use this medicine, Take so many Strawberries as you shall think fitting, and put them into a distillatory, or body of glass fit for them, which being well closed, set it in a bed of horse dung for your use. It is an excellent water for hot inflamed eyes, and to take away a film or skin that begins to grow over them, and for such other defects in them as may be helped by any outward medicine.

Familiar Wild Flowers Tansy Wildflower, illustration, herbaceous Plant, botany, plant Stem png | PNGWing


Garden Tansy is so well known, that it needs no description.

Time.] It flowers in June and July.

Government and virtues.] Dame Venus was minded to pleasure women with child by this herb, for there grows not an herb, fitter for their use than this is; it is just as though it were cut out for the purpose. This herb bruised and applied to the navel, stays miscarriages; I know no herb like it for that use: Boiled in ordinary beer, and the decoction drank, doth the like; and if her womb be not as she would have it, this decoction will make it so. Let those women that desire children[179] love this herb, it is their best companion, their husbands excepted. Also it consumes the phlegmatic humours, the cold and moist constitution of Winter most usually affects the body of man with, and that was the first reason of eating tansies in the Spring. The decoction of the common Tansy, or the juice drank in wine, is a singular remedy for all the griefs that come by slopping of the urine, helps the stranguary and those that have weak reins and kidneys. It is also very profitable to dissolve and expel wind in the stomach, belly, or bowels, to procure women’s courses, and expel windiness in the matrix, if it be bruised and often smelled unto, as also applied to the lower part of the belly. It is also very profitable for such women as are given to miscarry. It is used also against the stone in the reins, especially to men. The herb fried with eggs (as it is the custom in the Spring-time) which is called a Tansy, helps to digest and carry downward those bad humours that trouble the stomach. The seed is very profitably given to children for the worms, and the juice in drink is as effectual. Being boiled in oil, it is good for the sinews shrunk by cramps, or pained with colds, if thereto applied.

Thyme German Thyme Garden Thyme Stock Illustration - Download Image Now - iStock


It is in vain to describe an herb so commonly known.

Government and virtues.] It is a noble strengthener of the lungs, as notable a one as grows; neither is there scarce a better remedy growing for that disease in children which they commonly call the Chin-cough, than it is. It purges the body of phlegm, and is an excellent remedy for shortness of breath. It kills worms in the belly, and being a notable herb of Venus, provokes the terms, gives safe and speedy delivery to women in travail, and brings away the after birth. It is so harmless you need not fear the use of it. An ointment made of it takes away hot swellings and warts, helps the sciatica and dullness of sight, and takes away pains and hardness of the spleen. ’Tis excellent for those that are troubled with the gout. It eases pains in the loins and hips. The herb taken any way inwardly, comforts the stomach much, and expels wind.

Honeysuckle botanical art from 1972. Vintage vine botanical | Etsy


It is so well known, especially by the name of Honeysuckles, white and red, that I need not describe them.

Place.] They grow almost every where in this land.

Government and virtues.] Mercury hath dominion over the common sort. Dodoneus saith, The leaves and flowers are good to ease the griping pains of the gout, the herb being boiled and used in a clyster. If the herb be made into a poultice, and applied to inflammations, it will ease them. The juice dropped in the eyes, is a familiar medicine, with many country people, to take away the pin and web (as they call it) in the eyes; it also allays the heat and blood shooting of them. Country people do also in many places drink the juice thereof against the biting of an adder; and having boiled the herb in water, they first wash the place with the decoction, and then lay some of the herb also to the hurt place. The herb also boiled in swine’s grease, and so made into an ointment, is good to apply to the biting of any venomous creature. The herb also bruised and heated between tiles, and applied hot to the share, causes them to make water who had it stopt before. It is held likewise to be good for wounds, and to take away seed. The decoction of the herb and flowers, with the seed and root, taken for some time, helps women that are troubled with the whites. The seed and flowers boiled in water, and afterwards made into a poultice with some oil, and applied, helps hard swellings and imposthumes.

Flower illustration, Botanical drawings, Flower art


Both the tame and the wild are so well known, that they need no description.

Time.] They flower until the end of July, but are best in March, and the beginning of April.

Government and virtues.] They are a fine pleasing plant of Venus, of a mild nature, no way harmful. All the Violets are cold and moist while they are fresh and green, and are used to cool any heat, or distemperature of the body, either inwardly or outwardly, as inflammations in the eyes, in the matrix or fundament, in imposthumes also, and hot swellings, to drink the decoction of the leaves and flowers made with water in wine, or to apply them poultice-wise to the grieved places: it likewise eases pains in the head, caused through want of sleep; or any other pains arising of heat, being applied in the same manner, or with oil of roses. A dram weight of the dried leaves or flower of Violets, but the leaves more[189] strongly, doth purge the body of choleric humours, and assuages the heat, being taken in a draught of wine, or any other drink; the powder of the purple leaves of the flowers, only picked and dried and drank in water, is said to help the quinsy, and the falling-sickness in children, especially in the beginning of the disease. The flowers of the white Violets ripen and dissolve swellings. The herb or flowers, while they are fresh, or the flowers when they are dry, are effectual in the pleurisy, and all diseases of the lungs, to lenify the sharpness in hot rheums, and the hoarseness of the throat, the heat also and sharpness of urine, and all the pains of the back or reins, and bladder. It is good also for the liver and the jaundice, and all hot agues, to cool the heat, and quench the thirst; but the syrup of Violets is of most use, and of better effect, being taken in some convenient liquor: and if a little of the juice or syrup of lemons be put to it, or a few drops of the oil of vitriol, it is made thereby the more powerful to cool the heat, and quench the thirst, and gives to the drink a claret wine colour, and a fine tart relish, pleasing to the taste. Violets taken, or made up with honey, do more cleanse and cool, and with sugar contrary-wise. The dried flower of Violets are accounted amongst the cordial drinks, powders, and other medicines, especially where cooling cordials are necessary. The green leaves are used with other herbs to make plaisters and poultices to inflammations and swellings, and to ease all pains whatsoever, arising of heat, and for the piles also, being fried with yolks of eggs, and applied thereto.

Vintage botanical print Yarrow vintage print medicinal plant | Etsy


Descript.It hath many long leaves spread upon the ground, finely cut, and divided into many small parts. Its flowers are white, but not all of a whiteness and[199] stayed in knots, upon divers green stalks which rise from among the leaves.

Place.] It is frequent in all pastures.

Time.] It flowers late, even in the latter end of August.

Government and virtues.] It is under the influence of Venus. An ointment of them cures wounds, and is most fit for such as have inflammations, it being an herb of Dame Venus; it stops the terms in women, being boiled in white wine, and the decoction drank; as also the bloody flux; the ointment of it is not only good for green wounds, but also for ulcers and fistulas, especially such as abound with moisture. It stays the shedding of hair, the head being bathed with the decoction of it; inwardly taken it helps the retentive faculty of the stomach: it helps the gonorrhea in men, and the whites in women, and helps such as cannot hold their water; and the leaves chewed in the mouth eases the tooth-ache, and these virtues being put together, shew the herb to be drying and binding. Achilles is supposed to be the first that left the virtues of this herb to posterity, having learned them of this master Chiron, the Centaur; and certainly a very profitable herb it is in cramps, and therefore called Militaris.


The Complete Herbal by Culpepper Published in 1653

Post navigation