A pretty plant, wild in some places, and frequent in gardens. It grows a foot and half high. The stalk is round, striated, and of a pale green; naked half way up, and from thence to the top ornamented with large oval leaves of a pale green, blunt, smooth, ribbed, and not at all indented at the edges. The flowers hang from the under part of the stalk; they are small and white; the fruit is a berry as big as a pea, and black when ripe. The root, is white, oblong, irregular, and creeps under the surface of the ground.
The root is the part used; it is commended extremely for an outward application against bruises. The root dried and powdered is good against purgings with bloody stools; and the fresh root beat up into a conserve with sugar, against the whites.