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The aphaca1 has remarkably diminutive leaves, and is but little taller than the lentil. The pods are of a larger size, and enclose some three or four seeds, of a darker colour, moister, and more diminutive than those of the lentil: it grows in cultivated fields. It is naturally more astringent than the lentil, but in other respects is applied to much the same purposes. The seed, used in a decoction, arrests fluxes of the stomach and bowels.

1 Different probably from the plant of a similar name mentioned in B. xxi. cc. 52, 59. Fée identifies it with the Vetch, mentioned in B. xviii. c. 37. Littré gives as its synonym the Vicia cracca of Linnæus, the Tufted vetch, and Desfontaines the Lathyrus aphaca, the Yellow vetchling, or bindweed.

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