Culpeper's complete herbal: consisting of a comprehensive description of nearly all British and foreign herbs; with their medicinal properties and directions for compounding the medicines extracted from them.
Nicholas Culpeper wrote a complete treatise on medicinal herbs, which includes a description of both English and foreign ones, their curative properties and the medicinal components you can extract from them. This work, written in English, is dedicated to all those British people with a passion for botany and was published in a period where many works on the subject were being released. The coloured plates which illustrate the treatise are simple, but produce the desired effect and the drawings highlight the parts of a plant which help you to identify it. For this reason the leaves are always opened up and in a frontal position. In the examples found in the enclosed pages, there is also a good descriptive drawing of the blossoming. The long list of "contenta" is only in English, while the individual plant files also have the Latin scientific names. The liquorice on page 216 is described in minute detail, with geographical indications and flowering time. The "governments and virtus" begin with astrological references: we are in the Sphere of Mercury. There follow practical methods to make use of the various parts of a plant, their indications and properties. On page 153 we can find a detailed description of the fleur de lys, a flower that blooms under the influence of the moon and has numerous medical properties, especially depurative. Very interesting are the Directions for making syrups which are useful for the preparation of "decotions, oils, electuaries". Culpeper writes these directions while observing the spicer who makes them.