Chap. 115. Of Carrots, Wild.
I. The Names. It is called in Greek Σταφυλινος αγειος : In Latin, Pastinaca tenuifolia Sylvestris, by Matthiolus, and others; Pastinaca Erratica, by Fuchsius, Cordus, and Tabermontanus : Staphylinus Sylvestris, by Tragus and Caesalpinus : Daucus agrestis, by Galen, in libro de Alimentis, (and yet truly it is no Daucus : ) Daucus Vulgaris & Officinarum, by Lobel and Clusius : and in Engglish, Wild Carrot, and Birds-nest.
II. The Kinds. We shall only describe two Kinds, viz.
I. Pastinaca tenuifolia Sylvestris Anglica, The English Wild Carrot. (Daucus carota -Henriette)
2. Pastinaca tenuifolia Sylvestris Germanica, The German Wild Carrot. (Pastinaca sativa ssp. sylvestris? -Henriette)
III. The Descriptions. The first of these has a Root, small, long, and hard, and therefore unfit for meat, being somewhat sharp and strong : from this Root rise up Leaves, in a manner altogether like the Garden kinds, but that they are somewhat whiter and rougher, or more hairy, and so are the Stalks likewise, which bear large spiked tufts of white Flowers, with a deep purple spot in the middle, part being hollow and low, the outward Stalks rising higher, all which are so crouded or contracted together, as makes the whole Umble shew, when the Seed is ripe, like unto a Birds Nest, for which reason it has been called by some Birds Nest, not much unlike to the Flowers of the Gingidium verum.
IV. The German Wild Carrot has a white Root, which is often a Foot long, sometimes single, and sometimes divided into two or three parts, not much unlike in Taste and Smell to Parsley Roots, but hotter in the Mouth for a long time. From this Root rises up a Stalk half a yard high, as thick as ones little Finger at the bottom, being something round, but plainly crested or cornered, very hairy, and full of joints, at which come forth large crested Branches of winged Leaves, encompassing the Stalk at bottom, a foot in length, and divided into several Leaves, and they again into other smaller parts, very rough and hairy also, and of a yellowish green color, from between which Leaves and Stalks at the Joints, come forth other crested Stalks, and the like Leaves at their Joints, but lesser, which do very much resemble our Garden Carrot Leaves, but that they are larger and soft, if one does handle them hard, but rough on the back and edge, being gently touched. From every one almost of these Joints, both of the Stalk and Branches, arises a certain long husk, consisting of six small long Leaves, close set together, which when it opens, shews forth a small Tuft, or close Umble of white Flowers, and sometimes yellowish, and a little sweet ; after which follows a roundish Seed, two always joined together, and very prickly on the back side, the inner side being flat, and more yellow than Carrot Seed, otherwise much like to it.
V. The Places. The first grows plentifully in England by the field sides, and in untilled places, almost every where ; the other grows in like places in Germany, but with us is sometimes nursed up in Gardens, where it grows very well.
VI. The Times. They flourish and flower in June and July, and the Seed is ripe in August.
VII. The Qualities. The Seed and Root are hot and dry in the second Degree : Aperitive, Abstersive, Discussive, Carminative, Diuretick, Sudorifick, Cephalick, Stomatick, Nephritick, and Hysterick ; Alterative, Alexipharmick, and Spermatogenetick.
VIII. The Specification. Both Seed and Root are Lithontripticks, and good against the bitings of Venomous Beasts, Wind, and rising of the Mother.
IX. The Preparations. From Seed and Root, singly, you may have,
1. A Pouder.
2. A Decoction.
3. A Spirituous Tincture.
4. An Acid Tincture.
5. An Oily Tincture.
6. A Saline Tincture.
7. A Spirit.
8. A Fixed Salt.
X. The Pouder of the Root or Seed. It expels Wind, and eases Stitches in the side, provokes Urine and the Terms, and helps to break and expel the Stone. Dose one dram in White Wine.
XI. The Decoction of Root or Seed. If it is made in White Port Wine, it has all the Virtues of the Pouder, and is peculiarly good against the Dropsie, and such whose Bellies are swoln with Wind. Dose six or eight ounces, Morning, Noon and Night, it induces the Terms, provokes Lust, and facilitates the Delivery of Women in Labour.
XII. The Spirituous Tincture. It has the Virtues of both Pouder and Decoction, but is a singular thing against the Cholick, and good to help Conception. Dose one spoonful, Morning and Night, in a Glass of generous Wine.
XIII. The Acid Tincture. It is good against Stone and Gravel in both Reins and Bladder, and is very powerful to resist Vapors and Hysterick Fits, as also to cure the bitings and stingings of Venomous Creatures : and Dioscorides saith, it is so powerful, that if it is taken beforehand, their bitings shall not hurt. Dose forty or sixty drops in Wine.
XIV. The Oily Tincture. It opens Obstructions of the Reins and Urinary Parts, eases Pains, and cures weaknesses of the Back and Loins, provokes Urine, and the Courses. Dose twenty drops.
XV. The Saline Tincture. Outwardly bathed withal, it draws forth the Poison and Malignity of Venomous Creatures, takes away Scurf, Morphew, and Sun-burnings, as also other deformities of the Skin: and being taken inwardly to one dram, it provokes Urine, and prevails against the Dropsie.
XVI. The Spirit. It comforts the Head, Stomach, Heart and Womb, resists Poison, and the Plague, expels Wind, and gives ease in Pains and Stitches of the Side. Dose one spoonful.
XVII. The fixed Salt. It provokes Urine powerfully, and expels Sand, Gravel, and other Tartarous matter from the Reins, Ureters and Bladder : it powerfully opens and cleanses, and given from a scruple to half a dram, or more, in a spoonful of Juice of Limons, it stops Vomiting, and admirably strengthens the Stomach.
XVIII. The green Leaves. Dioscorides and Galen both say, that the Leaves being applied with Honey ( I suppose in form of a Cataplasm ) to running Sores or Ulcers, do cleanse them.
Botanologia, or The English Herbal, was written by William Salmon, M.D., in 1710.
This chapter has been proofread by Jennifer Dyer.