Chap. 014. Of Wild Anemones.

Botanical name: 

Anemone, Wild Greater. Anemone, Wild Smaller. I. THE Names. This Plant is called in Greek, ’Ανεμωνη αγζια. in Latin, Anemone Sylvestris, Anemone Nemorum, Herba Venti Sylvestris; and in English, Wild Anemone.

II. The Kinds. They are twofold,
1. The single Anemones.
2. The double Anemones.

The single Anemones Wild are,
1. The Greater or Broad-leaved Wild White Anemone. (Anemone nemorosa. -Henriette)
2. The Common or Smaller-leaved Wild Anemone, Purple, Carnation, Yellow, White. (Sports or cultivars of Anemone nemorosa? -Henriette)
3. The Wild double Anemone, Purple, Red, White. (Sports or cultivars Anemone nemorosa? -Henriette)

III. The Description. 1. The Greater or Broad-leav’d Wild White Anemone. The Root consists of a great number of long black Strings increasing very much by running under Ground, and shooting up in divers places, from whence springs forth divers broad green Leaves, cut into divisions, and dented about, very like unto a broad Leav’d Crowfoot, from among which rises up a Stalk, having some such like cut Leaves in the middle thereof, as grow below, but smaller; on the top whereof stands one large white Flower, consisting of five Leaves for the most part, with some yellow Threads in the middle, standing about such a green Head as you see in the Garden Anemones, which growing greater after the Flower is past, is composed of many small Seeds, wrapped up in a white kind of Down, which as soon as they are ripe, raise themselves up from the bottom of the Head, and fly away with the Wind, as the Garden kinds do.

IV. 2. The Common or Smaller-leav’d Wild single-flower’d Anemone. It has a Root long and small, somewhat like unto the Root of Polypody, creeping under the upper crust of the Earth, from whence rises up one or two, and sometimes more small, round, naked Stalks, bearing about the middle of them, small, soft and tender jagged Leaves, deeply cut in and indented on the edges about, from above which also does grow the Stalk, bearing small Flowers, Purple, Carnation, Yellow or White, not much unlike to a Crowfoot, (standing upon weak foot Stalks) with some Threads in the middle.

V. 3. The Wild double-flower’d Anemone. This double kind is very like unto the single white kind before described, both in its long running Roots, and its thin jagged Leaves, but somewhat larger: the Flowers whereof are very thick and double, but small, of a faint sweet Scent, which are of a purple, red, or white colour after they are blown, for five or six days; the purple and red are of a fine light colour towards the tops of the Leaves, but the bottoms of the Leaves of a very deep colour of the kind: and the White-flowered are very white when full blown, but afterwards they become a little purplish on the inside, but more on the out side, after which comes a small Head like the former kinds, but seldom or never give any Seed, especially the White kind.

VI. The Places. The first broad-leav’d grows Wild in divers places of Austria and Hungary; but with us, is nourisht up in Gardens: the other single kinds grow wild in most places in England, in Woods, Copses, Groves, Orchards, &c. except that with yellow Flowers. The double-flowered are only found in Gardens; but Clusius says they are found in the Low Countries, in a Wood near Lovain.

VII. The Times. They flower from the beginning of March, (which is the earliest) and continue flowering till May, or the middle of May; and the double kinds begin to flower presently after the single kinds are past.

VIII. The Qualities. They are hot and dry in the third degree. They cut, incide, attenuate, attract and inflame; are dedicated to the Head, Womb and Joynts, and Alteratives only in their Operation.

IX. The Specification. They are peculiar against cold and moist Distempers of the Head, Brain and Womb, and to cleanse old Ulcers.

X. The Preparations. Tho’ the Shops keep nothing of this Plant, yet you may prepare therefrom,
1. A Juice.
2. An Essence.
3. A Decoction.
4. A Gargarism.
5. A Saline Tincture.
6. An Oily Tincture.
7. An Ointment.
8. A Cataplasm.
9. A Masticatory.
10. A Pessary.

The Virtues.

XI. The Juice. It is a singular good Errhine, for by snuffing it up the Nostrils morning and evening, it Purges the Head and Brain of cold, thick and tough flegmatick Humors, whereby it prevails against Apoplexies, Epilepsie, Carus, Lethargies, Vertigo’s, Megrims and cold Head-aches, proceeding from a cold Cause.

XII. The Essence. It has the same Virtues used as an Errhine; but is most commonly given inwardly, from ij. drams to half an ounce, mixed with a draught of Mead, Wine, or some proper Water, to open Obstructions of the Womb, and to bring down effectually the Terms in Women, as also to hasten the Birth, and bring away the After-birth.

XIII. The Decoction. It is not so hot as the former, and therefore not so strong, but yet is effectual for the same things the Essence is, but may be given in a larger Dose, as from ij. ounces to iij. sweetned with white Sugar.

XIV. The Gargarism. It is made of the Juice or Essence, mixt with an equal quantity of the Decoction, to 8. ounces of which you may add iij. drams of pure Nitre, dissolving it therein. Used as a Gargle, it powerfully attracts cold and moist Humors out of the Head and Brain, and Parts adjacent, and so is good in the Cure of those Diseases, the Juice is said to be good against.

XV. The Saline Tincture. It more powerfully opens the Womb than the Essence does, and is used in inveterate Obstructions thereof when the Essence is not found powerful enough. It also opens Obstructions of the Reins and Bladder, provokes Urin, and expels Sand and Tartarous Matter. Dose from j. dram to ij. in some fit Vehicle.

XVI. The Oily Tincture. Tho’ this may be used inwardly, yet its chief Use is for External Applications against Weakness and cold Affections of the Nerves, Tendons, Ligaments and Joynts; against all sorts of Aches and Pains proceeding from Cold, or an Afflux of cold Humors, as also against Numedness, Tremblings, Cramps, Convulsions, Palsies, and the like Disaffections of the Nerves.

XVII. The Ointment. It has the Virtues of the Oily Tincture, but not so powerful, but is better for cleansing old running Sores, fætid Ulcers, malign and rebellious Fistula’s, and taking away Scabs, Itch, Scurff, Morphew, and other like Defilements of the Skin.

XVIII. The Cataplasm. It has the Virtues of the Ointment, opens the Pores of the Skin more, and prevails against Scabs, Scurff, Morphew, Leprosie, &c.

ΧIX. The Masticatory. It has all the Virtues of the Gargarism, but is better to be used by such as cannot away with the other. Its made of the Root.

XX. The Pessary. It is made either of the Root or Juice, with Wax and Barley-flower, and is put up into the Womb, to bring down the Courses.

Botanologia, or The English Herbal, was written by William Salmon, M.D., in 1710.
This chapter has been proofread by Lisa Haller.