Table of Contents:
Diphilus says that mushrooms are good for the stomach, and pass easily through the bowels, and are very nutritious, but still that they are not very digestible, and that they are apt to produce flatulence. And that especially those from the island of Ceos have this character. "Many are even poisonous to a fatal degree. But those which seem to be wholesome are those with the smoothest rinds, which are tender and easily crushed: such as grow close to elms and pine-trees. But those which are unwholesome are of a dark colour, or livid, or covered with hard coats; and those too which get hard after being boiled and placed on the table; for such are deadly to eat. But the best remedy for them when eaten unawares is drinking honey-water, and fresh mead, and vinegar. And after such a drink the patient should vomit. On which account, too, it is especially desirable to dress mushrooms with vinegar, or honey and vinegar, or honey, or salt: for by these means their choking properties are taken away. But Theophrastus, in his treatise about Plants, writes thus— “But plants of this kind grow both under the ground and on the ground, like those things which some people call fungi, which grow in company with mushrooms; for they too grow without having any roots; but the real mushrooms have, as the beginning by which they adhere to the ground, a stalk of some length, and they put forth fibres from that stalk.” He [p. 102] says also that in the sea which is around the Pillars of Her- cules, when there is a high tide, mushrooms grow on the shore close to high-water mark, which they say are left there by the sun. And Phænias says, in his first book about Plants —“But these things neither put forth any bloom, nor any trace of seminal germination; as, for instance, the mushroom, the truffle, groundivy, and fern.” And in another place he says,“πτερὶς (fern), which some people call βλάχνον.” But Theophrastus, in his book on Plants, says—“Plants with smooth rinds, as the truffle, the mushroom, the fungus, the geranium.”
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.
An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.