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Androsæmon1 or, as some persons call it, "ascyron," is not unlike hypericon, a plant of which we have spoken already:2 the stems, however, are larger, redder, and lie more closely together. The leaves are of a white colour, and like those of rue in shape; the seed resembles that of the black poppy, and the upper branches, when bruised, emit a red juice the colour of blood: these branches have also a resinous smell.

This plant grows in vineyards, and it is usually in the middle of autumn that it is taken up and hung to dry. Used as a purgative, it is bruised with the seed, and taken in the morning or just after the evening meal, in doses of two drachmæ, in hydromel, wine, or pure water, the draught amounting to one sextarius in all. It carries off bile, and is particularly good for sciatica; but in this last case, caper root must be taken with resin the day after, the dose being one drachma, to be repeated every four days: after being purged, it is the practice for the patient, if in robust health, to take wine, but if in a weak state of body, water. It is employed topically, also, for gout, burns, and wounds, as it tends to arrest the flow of blood.

1 "Man's blood." Identified by Sprengel with the Hypericum montanum, and by Sibthorp and Fée with the Hypericum perforatum, of Linnæus, Perforated tutsan or St. John's wort.

2 See B. xxvi. cc. 53, 54.

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