578. Absinthium.—Wormwood, N.F.

Botanical name: 

578. ABSINTHIUM.—WORMWOOD, N.F. The leaves and tops of Artemis'ia absin'thium Linné. Off. U.S.P. 1890. Consists of the grayish, softly, hairy, longitudinally ribbed or furrowed stems with the petiolate, pinnatifid, pubescent leaves mostly broken beyond recognition; flower-heads in racemes, hemispherical, about 3 mm. (1/8 in.) broad; receptacle small, hairy, convex, with all yellow, tubular florets; akenes obovoid, without pappus; odor strongly aromatic; taste intensely bitter and nauseous. Constituents: Tannin, resin, malates, absinthin, C15H20O4 (a bitter glucoside), absinthic acid (probably succinic acid), and a dark green volatile oil, about 1 per cent. (mainly absinthol), which has the odor of the drug, and when mixed with alcohol and oil of anise constitutes the absinthe of the French. Stomachic, tonic, anthelmintic and febrifuge. Dose: 15 to 60 gr. (1 to 4 Gm.).

Isolation of Absinthin.—Obtained by precipitating infusion, previously deprived of color, with tannin. The alcoholic extract of this precipitate is mixed with lead oxide and again extracted with alcohol. Absinthia deposits on evaporation of this tincture.

A Manual of Organic Materia Medica and Pharmacognosy, 1917, was written by Lucius E. Sayre, B.S. Ph. M.