Anemone nemorosa. Wood Anemone.
Nat. Ord. — Ranunculaceae. Sex. Syst. — Polyandria Polygynia.
Description. — Anemone Nemorosa, sometimes called Windflower , is a delicate and pretty plant, with a creeping root, and a simple, erect stem, with a single flower on a naked peduncle, and from six to nine inches high. The leaves are radical and ternate, and the leaflets undivided, or with the middle one three-cleft, and lateral ones two-parted, incisely dentate; involucre at the base of the flower-stalks, long petioled, divided into three, toothed, and cut: sepals four to six, oval, white, sometimes tinged with purple outside ; carpels fifteen or twenty, ovate, with a short style, hooked. Stamens numerous, much shorter than the sepals ; ovaries numerous, free, collected into a roundish or oval head.
History. — This plant is common to Europe and the United States, bearing purplish-white flowers in April and May. There are several varieties of it, which possess similar properties, as the A. Patens, of this country, the A. Pratensis and A. Pulsatilla, or Meadow Anemone of Europe. The last is probably the most active among them. The herbaceous part of the plant is employed in medicine. A volatile, crystallizable solid, called Anemonine is obtained from the various species of anemone, by distilling the plants with water, and setting the product aside; it crystallizes in brilliant white needles. Its formula is C2 H2 O2. Alkalies convert it into anemonic acid. A solution of it has been used externally in scaldhead, ulcers, caries, indurated glands, venereal nodes, serpiginous affections, paralysis, amaurosis, cataract, and opake cornea. Its internal use is questionable.
Properties and Uses. — These plants are acrid and poisonous. They have been recommended in amaurosis and other diseases of the eye, secondary syphilis, cutaneous diseases, and hooping-cough, in doses of one or two grains daily. When applied to the head, it is said to be a speedy cure for tinea capitis. In the recent state, the leaves bruised and applied to the skin are rubefacient. In large doses, this article produces nausea, vomiting, looseness of the bowels, and bloody urine. It is very seldom applied in practice, except among the Homeopaths, who use the A. Pulsatilla.