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Next to omphacium comes œnanthe, a product of the wild vine, described by us already1 when treating of the unguents. The most esteemed kind is that of Syria, the produce of the white vine2 in the vicinity of the mountains of Antiochia and Laodicea in particular. Being of a cooling, astringent nature, it is used for sprinkling upon sores, and is employed as a topical application for diseases of the stomach. It acts also as a diuretic, and is good for maladies of the liver, head-ache, dysentery, cœliac affections, and attacks of cholera: for nausea, it is taken in doses of one obolus in vinegar. It acts as a desiccative upon running eruptions of the head, and is extremely efficacious for maladies of the humid parts of the body; hence it is that it is employed, with honey and saffron, for ulcers of the mouth, and for diseases of the generative organs and the fundament. It arrests looseness of the bowels, and heals erup- tions of the eyelids and runnings at the eyes: taken with wine, it cures derangements of the stomach, and with cold water, spitting of blood.

The ashes of œnanthe are highly esteemed as an ingredient in eye-salves, and as a detergent for ulcers, whitlows, and hang-nails;3 to obtain these ashes, it is put into an oven, and left there till the bread is thoroughly baked.

As to massaris,4 it is used as a perfume only. The renown attached to all these preparations is due solely to the innate greediness of mankind, which has racked its invention to gather the productions of the earth before they have arrived at maturity.

1 In B. xii. c. 61. See also B. xiii. c.2, B. xiv. c. 18, and B. xv. c. 7. Œnanthe, or vine-blossom, possesses no active medicinal properties, and the statements made here by Pliny are in all probability unfounded.

2 Not the white vine, or Bryonia alba of modern botany, but probably some variety of the cultivated vine with white fruit. The flower of the bryony is inodorous, and would be of no utility in the composition of perfumes.

3 "Pterygia."

4 See B. xii. c. 61. It was prepared from vine-blossoms gathered in Africa.

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