A very pretty as well as a very useful plant, cultivated for the sake of its seeds, as well as its stalks. It is three feet high, the stalk is round, slender, firm, and upright. The leaves are small, oblong, and narrow; and they stand irregularly, but in great numbers on it. Toward the top the stalk divides into three or four short branches; and on these stand the flowers; they are large and of a beautiful blue. Each of these is succeeded by a roundish seed-vessel; in which are a number of seeds.
This seed is what is called linseed. A tea made of it is excellent in coughs and disorders of the breast and lungs, and the seed bruised is also good in cataplasms and fomentations for swellings. The oil drawn from it is given in pleurisies and peripneumonies with great success, and it is also excellent in the gravel and stone.