Rest Harrow, or Cammock

Descript : Common Rest Harrow rises up with divers rough woody twigs half a yard or a yard high, set at the joints without order, with little roundish leaves, sometimes more than two or three at a place, of a dark green colour, without thorns while they are young; but afterwards armed in sundry places, with short and sharp thorns. The flowers come forth at the tops of the twigs and branches, whereof it is full fashioned like pease or broom blossoms, but lesser, flatter, and somewhat closer, of a faint purplish colour; after which come small pods containing small, flat, round seed. The root is blackish on the outside, and whitish within, very rough, and hard to break when it is fresh and green, and as hard as an horn when it is dried, thrusting down deep into the ground, and spreading likewise, every piece being apt to grow again if it be left in the ground.

Place : It grows in many places of this land, as well in the arable as waste ground.

Time : It flowers about the beginning or middle of July, and the seed is ripe in August.

Government and virtues : It is under the dominion of Mars. It is singularly good to provoke urine when it is stopped, and to break and drive forth the stone, which the powder of the bark of the root taken in wine performs effectually. Matthiolus saith, The same helps the disease called Herma Carnosa, the fleshy rupture, by taking the said powder for three months together constantly, and that it hath cured some which seemed incurable by any other means than by cutting or burning. The decoction thereof made with some vinegar, gargled in the mouth, eases the tooth-ache, especially when it comes of rheum; and the said decoction is very powerful to open obstructions of the liver and spleen, and other parts. A distilled water in Balneo Mariæ, with four pounds of the root hereof first sliced small, and afterwards steeped in a gallon of Canary wine, is singularly good for all the purposes aforesaid, and to cleanse the urinary passages. The powder of the said root made into an electuary, or lozenges, with sugar, as also the bark of the fresh roots boiled tender, and afterwards beaten to a conserve with sugar, works the like effect. The powder of the roots strewed upon the brims of ulcers, or mixed with any other convenient thing, and applied, consumes the hardness, and causes them to heal the better.

  By PanEris using Melati.

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