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But it is olusatrum,1 more particularly, that is of so singular a nature, a plant which by the Greeks is called "hippose- linum,"2 and by others "smyrnium." This plant is repro- duced from a tear-like gum3 which exudes from the stem: it is also grown from the roots as well. Those whose business it is to collect the juice of it, say that it has just the flavour of myrrh; and, according to Theophrastus,4 it is obtained by planting myrrh. The ancients recommended that hipposelinum should be grown in uncultivated spots covered with stones, and in the vicinity of garden walls; but at the present day it is sown in ground that has been twice turned up, between the prevalence of the west winds and the autumnal equinox.

The caper,5 too, should be sown in dry localities more particularly, the plot being hollowed out and surrounded with an embankment of stones erected around it: it this precaution is not taken, it will spread all over the adjoining land, and entail sterility upon the soil. The caper blossoms in summer, and retains its verdure till the setting of the Vergiliæ; it thrives the best of all in a sandy soil. As to the bad qualities of the caper which grows in the parts beyond the sea, we have already6 enlarged upon them when speaking of the exotic shrubs.

1 Or "black-herb:" the herb Alexander, the Smyrnium olusatrun, of Linnæus. See B. xx. c. 46.

2 "Horse-parsley."

3 See B. xvii. c. 14, and B. xxi. c. 14.

4 Hist. Plant. B. ix. c. 1. This story originated, no doubt, in the fan- cied resemblance of its smell to that of myrrh.

5 The Capparis spinosa of Linnæus. See B. xiii. e. 44, also B. xx. c. 59.

6 In B. xiii. c. 44.

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