A common plant in our meadows, with broad and oblong leaves, striated stalks, and reddish tufts of flowers. It is a foot and half high. The stalk is round, not very firm, upright and a little branched. The leaves are of a deep green, angulated at the base, blunt at the point, and not at all indented about the edges. The flowers stand on the tops of the stalks, in the manner of those of docks, of which sorrel is indeed a small kind. They are reddish and husky; the root is small and fibrous; the whole plant has a sour taste. The leaves eaten as a sallad, or the juice taken, are excellent against the scurvy. The seeds are astringent, and may be given in powder for fluxes. The root dried and powdered, is also good against purgings, the overflowing of the menses, and bleedings.

There are two other kinds of sorrel, nearly of kin to this, and of the same virtue: one small, called sheep's sorrel, common on dry banks; the other large, with broad leaves, called garden sorrel, or round-leaved sorrel; this is rather preferable to the common kind. Besides these, there is a plant called in English a sorrel, so different from them all, that it must be described separately.

The Family Herbal, 1812, was written by John Hill.