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The Greeks have other varieties also of the clematis, one of which is known as "echites"1 or "lagine," and by some as the "little scammony." Its stems are about two Feet in height, and covered with leaves: in general appearance it is not unlike scammony, were it not that the leaves are darker and more diminutive; it is found growing invineyards and cultivated soils. It is eaten as a vegetable, with oil and salt, and acts as a laxative upon the bowels. It is taken2 also for dysentery, with linseed, in astringent wine. The leaves of this plant are applied with polenta for defluxions of the eyes, the part affected being first covered with a pledget of wet linen. Applied to scrofulous sores, they cause them to suppurate, and if some axle-grease is then applied, a perfect cure will be effected. They are applied also to piles, with green oil, and are good for phthisis, in combination with honey. Taken with the food, they increase the milk in nursing women, and, rubbed upon the heads of infants, they promote the rapid growth of the hair. Eaten with vinegar, they act as an aphrodisiac.

1 Probably the Asclepias nigra of Linnæus, black swallow-wort.

2 The Asclepias nigra has no such medicinal effects as those mentioned by Pliny.

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