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Chap. 002. Of Adonis-Flower.

Adonis. The Names. It is called in Greek ’ΕρφγΘεμογ, in Latin, Eranthemum, Adonis, Flos Adonidis, & Flos Adonis: in English, Adonis flower, Red Camomil, Red Maithes, Pheasants Eye.

II. The Kinds. It is numbred among those Herbs which are femine nudo polyspermae: and it seems there are two chief Species of it, viz. that with Red Flowers, called Flos Adonis flore Rubra: the other with yellow flowers called Adonis flore Luteo.

III. The Description. It has a root with very many slender, weak, small and thready strings, perishing every year; from this root rises up several slender weak stalks, trailing or leaning to the Ground, set on every part with fine jagged leaves, very deeply cut, like those of Camomil, or rather those of Mayweed, upon which Stalks, arising a foot higher or better, do grow small red flowers, consisting of 6 or 8 round leaves, almost like Field Crowfoot, having a blackish green head, or pointel in the middle, set round about with many blackish threads, without any smell at all; after the flowers are past there grows up heads with many roundish white seeds at the tops of them, set close together, very like unto the heads or seeds of the great Ox Eye, or not much unlike to a little Bunch of Grapes: The Plant rises of its own Seed again, many times before Winter, which will abide till the next year. That with the yellow flower is much like the former, but its stalks and leaves are of a more dilute Green.

IV. The Places. The Red grows in the West part of England amongst Corn (Barley, or possibly grains in general. -Henriette.), just as Mayweed does in other parts, and is likewise an enemy to Corn, as Mayweed is: from thence (for the Beauty of the flower sake) the Seed has been brought into some Gardens: The Yellow is a stranger in England, unless Nursed up in Gardens.

V. The Times. They flower in the Summer Months, as May, June, July and August, as the Year falls out to be early or late: and the seed is ripe soon after, and presently falls away, if not Gathered.

VI. The Qualities. They are hot and dry in the first degree; but Bauhine and Tabermontanus say they are hot and dry in the second; yet by the taste we can hardly judge so. They are Discussive, Digestive, Aperitive and Carminative: and by appropriation they are Stomatick, Hepatick and Nephritick, and of the kind of Alteratives.

VII. The Specification. They are said to be Specificks against Colick, and Stone, which Parkinson says has been confirmed by Experience; a dram of the seed, being given in some specifick Vehicle.

VIII. The Preparations. The Shops keep nothing of it, but you may make,

  • 1. A Pouder of the Seed.
  • 2. A Sulphureous Tincture.
  • 3. A Saline Tincture.
  • 4. A Chymical Oil of the Seed.
  • 5. An Essence of the Herb.
  • 6. A Bath of the Herb.

The Virtues.

IX. The Pouder of the Seed. It powerfully expels Wind, is good against Griping of the Bowels and Colick, and expels Sand and Gravel from the Reins and Bladder: it also strengthens the Stomach, and causeth a good Digestion.

X. The Sulphureous Tincture. It is made of the Seed, and is Stomatick and Carminative, good against pains of Head, Stomach and Belly: helps in the Vertigo, and cures a violent Flux. Dose from one Dram to two Drams in some fit Vehicle.

XI. The Saline Tincture. It is made both of Seed and Herb, and has all the virtues of the former: besides which it is an excellent thing against most Diseases of the lower Ventricle: it powerfully opens all Obstructions, and expels both Wind and Water out of the Bowels; and has a more singular and Specifick force against Stone and Gravel, whether in the Reins or Bladder, or any other matter obstructing those parts. The Dose is from half a dram to a dram, or dram and half in White Wine.

XII. The Chymical Oil. It gives present ease in the Stone and stoppage of Urine, if given from six drops to twelve in a Glass of White Wine, or Parsley or Arsmart Water. Drop it first into Sugar, which mix well together, and then mix it with the Liquor, and so let it be taken morning and evening. It provokes urine powerfully, gives immediate ease in the Pain, expels the Gravel, and is an admirable thing against the Colick.

XIII. The Essence. It has the Virtues of the Seed, but not altogether so powerful: daily taken, it strengthens the Stomach, and is good against the Scurvy in a cold Habit of Body: Dose one Spoonful or better, in Ale, Beer, Wine, or in some proper Water.

XIV. The Bath. It is made of the Herb boiled in a sufficient quantity of Water, in which a little Castile or Venice, or Genoua Soap is dissolved. It opens the Pores, cleanses the Skin, and is good against a Rheumatism, and pains of the Bowels and Joints, by sitting for some time in the Bath something more than Blood Warm, and several times repeating of the same.

Botanologia, or The English Herbal, was written by William Salmon, M.D., in 1710.
This chapter was proofread by Lisa Haller, who says: "Please note; I do not have access to middle-Greek so went with the closest visual match".

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