Mrs. Alice Culpeper


THE works that I have published to the world (though envied by some illiterate physicians) have merited such just applause, that thou mayest be confident in proceeding to publish anything I leave thee, especially this master-piece: assuring my friends and countrymen, that they will receive as much benefit by this, as by my Dispensatory, and that incomparable piece called Semiotica Uranica enlarged, and English Physician.

These are the choicest secrets, which I have had many years locked up in my own breast. I gained them by my constant practice, and by them I maintained a continual reputation in the world, and I doubt not but the world will honour thee for divulging them; and my fame shall continue and increase thereby, though the period of my Life and Studies be at hand, and I must now bid all things under the sun farewell. Farewell, my dear wife and child; farewell, Arts and Sciences, which I so dearly loved; farewell, all worldly glories; adieu, readers,


*  *  *

NICHOLAS CULPEPER, the Author of this Work, was son of Nicholas Culpeper, a Clergyman, and grandson of Sir Thomas Culpeper, Bart. He was some time a student in the university of Cambridge, and soon after was bound apprentice to an Apothecary. He employed all his leisure hours in the study of Physic and Astrology, which he afterwards professed, and set up business in Spital-fields, next door to the Red Lion, (formerly known as the Half-way House between Islington and Stepney, an exact representation of which we have given under our Author's Portrait), where he had considerable practice, and was much resorted to for his advice, which he gave to the poor gratis. Astrological Doctors have always been highly respected; and those celebrated Physicians of the early times, whom our Author seems to have particularly studied, Hippocrates, Galen; and Avicen, regarded those as homicides who were ignorant of Astrology. Paracelsus, indeed, went farther; he declared, a Physician should be predestinated to the cure of his patient; and the horoscope should be inspected, the plants gathered at the critical moment, &c.

Culpeper was a writer and translator of several Works, the most celebrated of which is his Herbal, ``being an astrologo-physical discourse of the common herbs of the nation; containing a complete Method or Practice of Physic, whereby a Man may preserve his Body in Health, or cure himself when sick, with such things only as grow in England, they being most fit for English Constitutions.''

This celebrated and useful Physician died at his house in Spital-fields, in the year 1654. This Book will remain as a lasting monument of his skill and industry.

``Culpeper, the man that first ranged the woods and
climbed the mountains in search of medicinal
and salutary herbs, undoubtedly merited
the gratitude of posterity''

  By PanEris using Melati.

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