Brank Ursine

BESIDES the common name Brank-Ursine, it is also called Bear's-breach, and Acanthus, though I think our English names to be more proper; for the Greek word Acanthus, signifies any thistle whatsoever.

Descript : This thistle shoots forth very many large, thick, sad green smooth leaves on the ground, with a very thick and juicy middle rib; the leaves are parted with sundry deep gashes on the edges; the leaves remain a long time, before any stalk appears, afterwards rising up a reasonable big stalk, three or four feet high, and bravely decked with flowers from the middle of the stalk upwards; for on the lower part of the stalk, there is neither branches nor leaf. The flowers are hooded and gaping, being white in colour, and standing in brownish husk, with a long small undivided leaf under each leaf; they seldom seed in our country. Its roots are many, great and thick, blackish without and whitish within, full of a clammy sap; a piece of them if you set it in the garden, and defend it from the first Winter cold will grow and flourish.

Place : They are only nursed in the gardens in England, where they will grow very well.

Time : It flowers in June and July.

Government and virtues : It is an excellent plant under the dominion of the Moon; I could wish such as are studious would labour to keep it in their gardens. The leaves being boiled and used in clysters, is excellent good to mollify the belly, and make the passage slippery. The decoction drank inwardly, is excellent and good for the bloody-flux. The leaves being bruised, or rather boiled and applied like a poultice are excellent good to unite broken bones and strengthen joints that have been put out. The decoction of either leaves or roots being drank, and the decoction of leaves applied to the place, is excellent good for the king's evil that is broken and runs; for by the influence of the moon, it revives the ends of the veins which are relaxed. There is scarce a better remedy to be applied to such places as are burnt with fire than this is, for it fetches out the fire, and heals it without a scar. This is an excellent remedy for such as are bursten, being either taken inwardly, or applied to the place. In like manner used, it helps the cramp and the gout. It is excellently good in hectic fevers, and restores radical moisture to such as are in consumptions.

  By PanEris using Melati.

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