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My Medieval Herb Garden

My herb garden with medieval herbs and flowers! A new project for July 2020.
Organic gardening, medieval plants and flowers, what they were used for in the medieval period
and what I'm using them for. Images from my own garden.
Notes updated as I harvest. This page is a work in progress.

Currently planted: wormwood, chamomile, feverfew, oregano, rue, parsley, lemon geranium, nasturtiam, chives, garlic, onions, strawberries, violets, roses, rosemary, sweet william, elder, salvia, catmint, borage, comfrey, soapwort, sage, evening primrose, mustard, peas, lavender, aloe vera, raspberry, lavender, basil, coriander, ivy, lady's mantle, mint, lemon.

To get: fennel (Tacuinum Sanitatis, useful for menstruation)

 

Aloe
Aloe vera

Current Status:
established

Uses:
- cures worms.
- cures stomach fevers.
- cures coughs.
- cures jaundice.
- Hildegard von Bingen, Physica:

For strong daily stomach fevers, once should make a plaster with aloe on hempen cloth. When placed over the stomach and navel, the fever will cease. It's odor strengthens a person internally; it purges a similar affliction in the head.
One who has a cough should put an aloe plaster on his chest so that he can smell the odour. The cough will cease.
One who has jaundice should place aloe in cold water and drink it in the morning and when he goes to bed. He should do this three or four times and he will be cured.
A person whom a worm is eating in some place should take lime and twice as much chalk and with wine or water, make a thin cement. Apply with 5 days with a feather to the area where the worm is. On the fifth day, take aloe and a third as much myrrh, crush and with fresh wax, prepare a plaster. It should be put on a hempen cloth and tied on the place of distress for 12 days.

Basil

Current Status:
small plant

Uses:
- blood tonic.
- speech impediment cure.
- brain assist.
- cools fevers.
- Tacuinum Sanitatis Vienna. The Four Seasons of the House of Cerruti:

Various plants in the garden have this name and they all have hot and dry natures, but in varying degrees. Choose leaves with the sweetest perfume; it helps dissolve the brain's superfluities and breeds strong blood.

- Hildegard von Bingen, Physica:

A person who has palsy in his tongue, so that he is unable to speak, should place basil under his tongue, and he will recieve speech. Also one who has strong fevers, should cook basil in wine, with honey added. He should strain it and drink it frequently, with or without food, and at bedtime. His fevers will cease.
A person who has burning fevers should take asafoetida and twice as much basil, and cook this in pure wine. He should allow it to cool, and drink it daily while fasting, both in morning and night when he goes to bed. He should do this until he gets well.
A person who suffers from burning fevers should cook ficaria or lesser celandine and twice as much basil, and cook this in pure wine each day on an empty stomach, and at night when he goes to bed. He should do this until he is well.

Borage


Current Status: self-seeded from last season, flowering

Uses:
- improves vision.
- cures tinnitus.
- chest decongestant.
- cures intestinal ulcers.
- assists with birthing.
- Hildegard von Bingen, Physica:

A person whose vision is obscured should break borage into pieces and smear it on a red, silk cloth. He should put it over his eyes at night. If he does this often, the dimness will go away from his eyes. It is not harmful to touch the inside of the eyes with this ointment.
If the silk is white or green, he should put borage juice on it, then smear it on felt, and wrap that around his entire neck, over the back of his head, and up to his ears, but not covering them. If he does this often, it will stop his ears from ringing.
Anyone whose chest is congested should put a very little borage in wine. The evil humours which harm the lungs will go away.
But, if someone ails from intestinal ulcers, he should take bran and heat it in a small dish with borage. He should place it, so warmed, over his whole belly and navel, and he will be cured.

- Trotula, On Treatments for Women:

For birth of the womb and for bringing out the afterbirth. Take root of parsley, leaves of leek, and borage, and extract the juice, and mix in a little oil, and give to the patient to drink, and put vinegar into the vagina, and she will be freed.

Catmint

Current Status: established.

Uses:
- anti-inflammatory
- Bald's Leechbook III says:

For breast pain, horehound, catmint, radish, bishopwort, wenwort, boil in honey and butter, put two-thirds of honey to one thinrd of butter, use it as it may be needsful to you.

 

 

Chamomile


Current Status:
seedling

Uses:
- handwash.
- purges menstruation.
- intestinal pain relief.
- stitch cure.
- scrofula cure with fox fat and egg yolk.
- Le Menagier de Paris:

To make water for washing hands at table: Boil sage, then strain the water and cool it until it is a little more than lukewarm. Or use chamomile, marjoram, or rosemary boiled with orange peel. Bay leaves are also good.

- Hildegard von Bingen, Physica:

German chamomile is hot, has a pleasant juice and is like a gentle ointment for painful intestines. If one has pain in the intestines, one should cook German chamomile with water and lard or oil. He should add fine, whole wheat flour, and thus make a porridge. He should eat it and it will heal his intestines.
When women menstruate, they should eat or drink that same porridge. It will gently provide a purgation of mucus and internal fetid matter and bring on menses.
However a person who suffers a stitch should mix together the juice of German chamomile with cow butter. He should rub the area which hurts and he will be cured.

A person who has scrofula increasing on his body should take the fat of a fox, and add to it less of the fat of egg yolks. He should then mix chamomile in these fats and heat it up in a small dish. Then he should tie the chamomile over the scrofula with a cloth. When these leaves have dried up, he should heat others up in the same way and place them on the area. he should do this for three days and nights, then annoint the scrofula with the fats ... and it will vanish.

Chives
Allium schoenoprasum

Current Status: established

Uses: not mentioned in medieval manuscripts that I've found

 

Comfrey

Current Status: small plant

Uses:
- intestinal injury.
- post-partum rupture.
- Hildegard von Bingen, Physica:

If some part of a person is deficient, ulcerated or wounded, and he then eats comfrey, it quickly pursues the mucus which is coming out there, healing it as well as the ulcers on the surface of the skin.
It does not heal ulcers within the body.
If the interior membrane, which encloses the intestines, is cut by some accident, ivy and twice as much comfrey should be cooked in good wine. After these herbs are cooked, they should be taken from the wine. Then a bit of pulverised zedoary, sugar equal to the amount of zedoary, and some cooked honey should be added to the wine and brought to a moderate boil. This should be poured through a little sack, making a clear drink. The ill person should drink this frequently, after food, and at night. He should also place the herbs which were cooked in wine over the place where the interior membrane was ruptured. This draws together the torn places.
He should also cut comfrey root into minute bits and place them in wine, so that it takes their flavour. He should drink this wine often, until he is healed.

- Trotula, On Treatments for Women:

For rupture of the lower parts after birth, take root of comfrey, dry it and then pulverise it well, and put with fine powder of cumin and also cinnamon in the vagina, and it will be solidified.

Coriander or cilantro
Coriandrum savitum

Current Status: small plant, reseeded

Uses: Although mentioned by Hippocrates and Dioscorides and found in archaeologic digs in macedonia from the Bronze age, it is not specifically mentioned in medieval texts that I've found.

It may be known under another name or not used at all.

I love it.

Elder
Sambucus nigra

Current Status: several small trees

Uses:
- freckle banisher: Dwarf Elder water distilled.
- skin tonic: elderflower water.
- jaundice cure.
- fabric dye.

- Innsbruck Manuscript from Germany, 1330:

One should take elder and boil it in alumwater, that makes a green color and also a black, if one mixes it with a bit of black color.

Take the leaves of a dwarf elder and mash them and take indigo and add thereto and grind it together and let them dry together for a long time and take lime water and let it seethe together and then take alum and grind it thereto while it's all hot. Paint it on white fabric, and it will become a good blue.

- Hildegard von Bingen, Physica:

One who has jaundice should enter a sauna bath and place the leaves of this tree on hot rocks. he should pour water over them, and then place a twig in pure wine so it takes its flavour. While in that bath, he should drink this in moderation. After he comes out of that bath, he should lie in bed, so that he sweats. he should do this ofeten and he will be better.

Fennell

Current status: seeds

Uses:
- teeth whitener.
- breath freshener.
- aids digestion.
- clears eyes.
- childbirth pain relief.
- Hildegard von Bingen, Physica:

In whatever way it is eaten, it makes a person happy ... and makes his digestion good.
Eating fennel or its seeds every day diminished bad phlegm and decaying matter, keeps bad breath in check and makes ones eyes see more clearly.
Also, if a pregnant woman labours much in childbirth, one should cautiously cook sweet herbs such as fennel and asarum, in water. With the water squeezed out, they should be placed, so warmed, around her thighs and back, and be held there, gently tied on by a cloth. This should ease the pain and cause her closed womb to more gently and easily loosen.
A person who suffers from stinking breath- which passes to the lungs-... sahould take galingale and fennel in equal weights and twice the amount of both nutmeg and feverfew. he should pulverise these, and mix these together. He should eats two pennyweights of this powder with a small mouthful of bread every day on an empty stomach.

- De Ornatu Mulierum (About Women’s Cosmetics), attributed to Trotula de Ruggiero:

The woman should wash her mouth after dinner with very good wine. Then she ought to dry very well and wipe with a new white cloth. Finally, let her chew each day fennel or lovage or parsley, which is better to chew because it gives off a good smell and cleans good gums and makes the teeth very white.

Feverfew or Pellitory
bertram

Current Status: established

Uses:
- general health tonic.
- eye health.
- Hildegard von Bingen, Physica:

It restores health to an ill person whose body is almost completely failing.
Eaten often, it expels pleurisy and provides a person with pure humours. it gives him clear eyesight.
In whatever way it is eaten, whether dried or in food, it is beneficial to both sick and healthy people.

 

Garlic
Allium sativum

Current Status:
small plant/established

Uses:
- blemish remover.
- poison antidote, used warmed and dried.
- kills worms.
- cough soother.
- improves the voice.
- relieves dropsy.
- food to accompany red wine.
- Canterbury Tales, Chaucer:

Wel loved he garleek, oynons, and eek lekes, And for to drynken strong wyn, reed as blood

- Tacuinim Sanitatus, Vienna, The Four Seasons of the House of Cerruti:

It is effective against cold poisons, scorpion and adder bites: it kills worms, clears the voice, and soothes chronic coughs. It can damage the eyes and brain and to prevent and remedy this, vinegar and oil are necessary. Pounded in a mortar with black olives, as the Greeks do, garlic is useful for dropsy sufferers.

- Hildegard von Bingen, Physica:

For sick as well as healthy people, garlic is more healthful to eat than leeks. It ought to be eaten raw.

Geranium or cranesbill

Current Status: small plant, flowering

Uses:
- treatment of kidney stones.
- melancholia treatment.
- weak heart.
- Hildegard von Bingen, Physica:

One who has a stone in his body should take geranium and a little less saxifrage and cook them in water. he should strain this through a cloth and prepare a sauna. He should also cook oats in water and pour that water over the hot rocks. After he has sweated in the bath, he should drink the water in which the geranium and saxifrage were cooked. The stone will be gently broken up.
And one who has pain in his heart and is always sad should take geranium, and less pennyroyal, and even less rue and pulvarise it. He should often eat this powder with his bread. His heart will be strengthened and he will be happy.

Ivy

Current Status: small plant

Uses:
- soothes injuries.
- soothes burns.
- soothes insect bites.
- hair remover.
- Trotula (attributed)- on Women's Cosmetics:

In order to permanently remove hair. Take ant's eggs, red orpiment, and gum of ivy, mix with vinegar, and rub the areas.

 

 

 

Lady's Mantle
Alchemilla vulgaris

Current Status: Flowered profusely, then died back.

Uses:
- lessening menstrual flow. The astringent leaves were helpful with profuse menstruation.

 

 

Lavender
Lavendula vera

Current Status:
died. Needs replacing.

Uses:
-
linen scent, being stored with it or rinsed in lavender water.
- lice deterrent.
- eye health.
- Hildegard von Bingen, Physica:

If a person with many lice frequently smells lavender, the lice will die.
It's odour clear the eyes.

 

 

 

 

 

Lemon
Citra

Current Status: small tree

Uses:
- kidney stone relief.
- reduces fevers.
- skin whitener.
- freckle remover.
- Tacuinim Sanitatus, Vienna, The Four Seasons of the House of Cerruti:

They provide limited nourishment but increase the flow of bile. A syrup is made from the juice, which is useful for contagious and pestilential fevers. A water distilled from lemons which cures scabies and which women use, with much success, to improve their appearance. Juice squeezed from bitter lemons and drunk with Malmsey wine is effective in expelling kidney stones.


Lemon geranium

Current Status: medium plant

Uses:

Not mentioned specifically as a seperate type of geranium in manuscripts that I've found, although it may have been used under the heading of geranium.

 

 

 

 

 

Mint

Current Status: Several plants

Uses:
- heats the blood
- revived after fainting
- stops a bleeding nose
- aids digestion
- cures hiccups
- anti-vomiting properties
- anti-curding properties
- stops runny eyes
- Tacuinim Sanitatus, Vienna, The Four Seasons of the House of Cerruti:

Small plants with thick leaves are preferable. It is good only when the stomach has cold and moist temperaments, but it is not good if one has a hot stomach, due to its hot and dry nature, which heats the blood. Its scent will revive the spirits of someone who has fainted. Added to pomegranite wine, it cures hiccups and stops vomiting. The water obtained from distilling the whole plant (and the decoction should be quite strong) is a sure remedy, taken as a drink, for a bleeding nose. If mint leaves are put into milk, it will stop it from coagulating.

- Hildegard von Bingen, Physica:

The mint, field mint, which is called "lesser" is more hot than cold. This should be pounded, and placed on the eyes where there is a discharge, tied with a cloth.
One who... is unable to digest food should eat field mint raw, or cooked with meats and fish. It will warm his stomach, and provide good digestion.

 

Mustard

Current Status: seed

Uses:
- appetite stimulant
- blood-thinner
- gout relief
- clears the eyes
- sciatica relief
- Tacuinim Sanitatus, Vienna, The Four Seasons of the House of Cerruti:

The seeds of the mustard plant are used to make a condiment, which is served with food and stimulates the appetite wonderfully. Because of its vapourous quality it sometimes penetrates the nose unpleasantly, rising to the brain and causing sneezing.
Mustard, which thins the blood, is useful mainly against gout.
It is also useful against sciatica if mixed with figs and applied to the affected area until it turns red due to the very hot nature of mustard.
The harm that it may do the brain can be avoided by preparing it with almonds and vinegar.

- Hildegard von Bingen, Physica:

The herb itself is harmful to eat... It destroys the insides of a person who eats it. It's seeds flavour other foods. When eaten, it makes the eyes clear but puts a vapour in the brain. If it is not tempered by wine or vinegar, it is not good for human consumption.

Nasturtium
Rucola masturcium

Current Status: plants

Uses:
- arouses desire
- reduce urine
- kills worms (Vienna f.24v)
- increases sperm noticably
- Tacuinum sanitatis, Liege. folio 10:

Usefulness: They increase coitus and sperm.
Dangers: They cause headaches.
Neutralisation of the dangers: With endive salad, lettuce and vinegar.

- Tacuinum sanitatis, Vienna, folio 24v:

Capers
Usefulness: They help the stomach and the appetite, remove occlusions of the liver and of the spleen, and kill worms.
Dangers: They are difficult to digest.
Neutralisation of the dangers: By cooking them with oil, vinegar and aromatic spices.
Effects: They heat the blood and are more suited to cold temperaments, old people, children, in Winter and in cold regions. But, if prepared as described above, they are good for all temperaments and ages and in every region.

- Tacuinum sanitatus, Vienna, f 30v includes:

Augment the sperm and coitus, causes migraines

- Tacuinum sanitatus, Casanatense, f.LIV.:

Augments the sperm and coitus but causes migraines

Onions
Allium cepa

Current Status:
small plant

Uses:
- blemish remover when used with vinegar
- improves eyesight
- improves respiritory distress
- kills worms when steeped all night in springwater and taken after morning fasting
- facillitates coitus
- increases semen
- bladder stimulant
- increases milk in nursing mothers
- Tacuinim Sanitatus, Vienna, The Four Seasons of the House of Cerruti:

The most desirable of the many varieties are the white ones, being rich in watery juices. They generate milk in nursing mothers and fertile semen in men. They improve the eyesight, are softening, and stimulate the bladder. Headaches, which are sometimes caused by onions, can be cured with vinegar and milk. Those suffering from coughs, asthma, and constrictions of the chest should eat boiled onions, or onions baked in embers, served with sugar and a little fresh butter.

- Tacuinum sanitatus, Paris, folio 24v-

Nature: (according to Rasis) warm in the fourth degree, moist in the third.
Optimum: The white ones which are watery and juicy.
Usefulness: They are diuretic and fecilitate coitus.
Dangers: They cause headaches.
Neutralisation of the dangers: With vinegar and milk.

 

Oregano

Current Status: established

Uses:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Parsley
Petroselinum crispum

Current Status: established

Uses:
- head lice repellant
- menstruation assist: can bring about a late period.
- period pain relief.
- Tacuinim Sanitatus, Vienna, The Four Seasons of the House of Cerruti:

It is good for the health because it unblocks occlusions, helps the bladder to function properly and relieves the discomfort of the female period. It heats the blood and excessive use also causes headaches.

 

 

 

Peas

Current Status: seedling

Uses:
- food
- intestinal help
- Hildegard von Bingham, Physica:

They are not good for the sicknesses of cold-natured people. Eating peas produces much mucus in them...
If anyone has an ailment in his intestines, he should often swallow a warm broth of peas and he will get better.

 

 

 

 

 

Raspberry

Current status: near death but with new buds

Uses:
- berries for eating

Rose
Rosa

Current Status: established

Uses:
- clothing scent.
- hair scent.
- brain tonic.
- Menagier de Paris gave directions for drying roses to put among clothes:

Roses from Provence are the best to put in clothing, but they should be dried, and in mid-August sift them over a screen so that the worms fall through the screen, and then spread them in your clothes.

- Trotula gives the following recipe for a scented powder to brush into the hair:

But when she combs her hair, let her have this powder. Take some dried roses, clove, nutmeg, watercress and galangal. Let all these, powdered, be mixed with rose water. With this water let her sprinkle her hair and comb it with a comb dipped in this same water so that [her hair] will smell better. And let her make furrows in her hair and sprinkle on the above-mentioned powder, and it will smell marvelously.

- Tacuinim Sanitatus, Vienna, The Four Seasons of the House of Cerruti:

They are beneficial to the heated brain, although they sometimes cause heaviness and dulling of the olfactory senses. This can be remedied with camphor or saffron. Fresh roses from Persia are the best.

- Hildegard von Bingen, Physica:

One who is inclined to wrath should take rose and less sage and pulverise them. When wrath is rising in him, he should hold this powder to his nostrils. The sage lessens the wrath and the rose makes him happy. Rose, and hald as much sage, may be cooked with fresh, melted lard, in water, and an ointment made from this. The place where a person is troubled by cramp or paralysis should be rubber with it, and he will be better.
When it's (olive tree) oil is first prepared, it is cooked on a fire, and then roses and violets are put into it. Thus it prevails against various fevers and, because it was cooked on a fire, not necessary to leave in the sun anymore.

Rosemary
Rosmarinus officinalis

Current Status:
established

Uses:
- face wash, mixed with white wine.
- antiseptic.
- handwash.
- symbol or fidelity and memory.
- used in funeral wreaths.
- sore mouth relief when used with mallow.
- Banckes' Herbal 1525:

boil the leaves in white wine and wash thy face therewith, thy beard and thy brows, and there shall no corns grow out, but thou shall have a fair face.

- Le Menagier de Paris says:

To make water for washing hands at table: Boil sage, then strain the water and cool it until it is a little more than lukewarm.
Or use chamomile, marjoram, or rosemary boiled with orange peel. Bay leaves are also good.

Rue
Ruta graveolens


Current Status:
plant

Uses:
- pimple cure when bruised and added to myrtle leaves and being made up with wax.
- linen freshener to keep away bugs and noxious odors
- poison antidote
- removes lust
- helps watery eyes
- helps epilepsy
- encourages urine
- period bringer. Encourages the menses when late.
- Tacuinim Sanitatus, Vienna, The Four Seasons of the House of Cerruti:

This plant is an antidote for poisons and helps epileptics, yet it causes headaches. The best place to grow is the shade of a fig tree. It's virtues as an antidote are well-known by the weasel who, it is said, prepares itself with rue before going out snake hunting. Some believe it has powers against spirits. Everyone knows, on Galen's authority, that rue "extinguises the flames of Venus."

- Hildegard von Bingen, Physica:

A person whose eyes water should take rue, and twice as much sage, and twice as much chervil as sage. He should pound these herbs a moderate amount, in a mortar, so they give out a little bit of juice. Then he should dip these crushed herbs in egg white. At night, when he goes to bed, he should place this mixture oveer his forehead, all the way to both temples.
A person who has black, turbulant eyes, so that sometimes there is a cloud which fogs them in some way, should take the sap of rue, and twice as much pure, liquid honey, and mix them with good, clear wine. he should put a crumb of whole wheat bread in it and tie it over his eyes , at night, with a cloth.

 

Sage
Salvia officinalis

Current Status:
small plant

Uses:
- alleviates gangrene used with rosemary and mallow.
- alleviates sore mouths.
- breath freshener.
- appetite enhancer.
- enhances pregnancy chances.
- handwashing.
- urinary incontinence.
- calms nerves.
- hair dye when made into a tea (Hortus sanitatis)
- removes dark colour from hair.
- aids mouth cancer when used with salt and vinegar.
- anti-perspirant- Le Menagier de Paris says:

To make water for washing hands at table: Boil sage, then strain the water and cool it until it is a little more than lukewarm. Or use chamomile, marjoram, or rosemary boiled with orange peel. Bay leaves are also good.

- Tacuinim Sanitatus, Vienna, The Four Seasons of the House of Cerruti:

It is good for the stomach and cold diseases of the nerves. It's digestion is slow but can be speeded up with honey. We read that if a woman who has slept alone for four days drinks this and then has sexual relations, she will immediantly become pregnant. To this end, women who survived the plague in one town in Egypt were made to drink the juice of sage leaves so the town could quickly be repopulated.

- Hildegard von Bingen, Physica:

Anyone... who has stinking breath, should cook sage in wine, strain it through a cloth, and drink it often.
Someone who disdains eating should take sage, and a little less chervil, and a bit of garlic, and pound these together with vinegar, and so make a condiment. he should dip foods he wishes to eat in it, and he will have an appetitie for eating.
If anyone is unable to hold his urine because of the coldness of his stomach, he should cook sage in water, and strain it through a cloth. He should often drink it warm, and he will be cured.

- Tacuinum sanitatis, Liege:

Dangers: removes dark colour from the hair.
Neutralisation of the dangers: With a rinse in which there is some myrtle and oriental crocus.

Salvia

Current Status:
established

Uses:

 

 

 

 

 

Soapwort
Saponaria officinalis.
Also known as bruisewort, dog cloves, fuller's herb, latherwort

Current Status: seed

Uses:
- cleaning cloth
- purgative in ginger
- stomach ache remedy
- originally grown in northern Europe until its introduction to England by Franciscan and Dominican monks.
-Hildegard von Bingen, Physica:

But one whose stomach is ill, should take parsley, and twice as much fennel and as much soapwort as parsley and make a relish from them. To this he should add butter or beef fat and roasted salt and eat it often, cooked.
A person who is unable to digest the food he has just eaten, should take two pennyweight of aristolochia, one pennyweight of pimpernell juice, and a helf pennyweight each of soapwort juice and ginger. He should mix fine whole wheat flour with these juices and make little cakes as wide as pennies, but a bit thick.He should cook them in the sun or a nearly cool oven... the person... should take one of these little cakes in the morning, on an empty stomach.

 

Strawberry

Current Status:
established

Uses:
- skin toner, juice or water removes redness
- removes spots or deformities of the skin and make it clear and smooth
- Hildegard von Bingen, Physica:

They are beneficial as food for neither a sick nor a healthy person because they grow near the ground and, indeed, in putrid air.

 

 

Sweet William
Dianthus


Current Status:
established

Uses:
- decorative

Not seen in any health manuals, but in illuminated borders from the 15th century.

 

 

 

Violets

Current Status:
established

Uses:
- decorative
- reduces fevers
- calms fits
- purges humours
- reduces pain in children
- herals lungs
- melancholia remedy
- Tacuinim Sanitatus, Vienna, The Four Seasons of the House of Cerruti:

Keep in the garden violets that are the colout of lapis lazuli: the little plants with many leaves are the best. When cooking them, boil lightly and briefly; the infusion makes a vinegar that is wonderfully effective against fevers accompanied by a parching thirst. The perfume of violets calms fits; the drink purges humours; violet water, obtained through distillation, is good for bodily pains in young children. By nature a little cold and moderately moist, the violet is suited to those with warm, dry temperaments and can therefore aggravate catarrhs brought on by harsh weather.

- The Goodman of Paris says:

Know that I take delight rather than displeasure in your cultivating rose bushes, caring for violets and making chaplets, and also in your dancing and singing; I wish you to continue to do so among our friends and peers, for it is only right and just that you should thus pass the days of your maidenly youth.

- Hildegarde of Bingen, Physica:

Anyone oppressed by melancholy with a discontented mind, which then harms hi slungs, should cook violets in pure wine. He should strain this through a cloth, ass a bit of galengale, and as much licorice as he wants, and so make spiced wine. When he drinks it, it will check the melancholy, make him happy and heal his lungs.
But for one... whose body a swelling has risen up somewhere after a fall or a blow, he should place violets in the olive oil and annoint himself where it hurts. If there is a swelling, he should annoint himself near it, but not on it.

 

Wormwood
Artemesia absynthum

Current Status:
large plant

Uses:
- protects clothing from damage whilst in storage.
- moth repellant in woolen cloths.
- moth killer.
- liver tonic.
- kills worms.
- repels vermin in clothes when mixed with southernwood, the leaves of a cedar tree and valerian.
- Tacuinim Sanitatus, Vienna, The Four Seasons of the House of Cerruti:

Ellbochasim, the scholar from Baghdad, states that the best wormwood comes from Pontus; it has smaller leaves and flowers than other wormwoods and is pleasantly aromatic, not abominable-smelling like the others. He goes on to praise the so-called Roman wormwood which did not actually grow in the area around Rome or even Italy, but in Bohemia, Hungary and Transylvania. It helps cold stomachs, is good for obstructions of the liver, stimulated the apetitie and kills worms. It heats and thickens the blood but is an astringent. Its harmful effects can be remedied with sugar, vinegar, herns and almond oil.

- Hildegard von Bingen, Physica:

If a person occasionally has a pain in his kidneys and loin... Then that person should take equal parts of rue and wormwood, and add a greater amount of bear fat, and pound these together. He should vigorously rub himself with it, around his kidneys and loins, while near the fire.


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