Spleenwort, Ceterach, or Heart's Tongue

Descript : The smooth Spleenwort, from a black thready and bushy root, sends forth many long single leaves, cut in on both sides into round dents almost to the middle, which is not so hard as that of polypody, each division being not always set opposite unto the other, cut between each, smooth, and of a light green on the upper side, and a dark yellowish roughness on the back, folding or rolling itself inward at the first springing up.

Place : It grows as well upon stone walls, as moist and shadowy places, about Bristol, and other the west parts plentifully; as also on Framlingham Castle, on Beaconsfield church in Berkshire, at Stroud in Kent, and elsewhere, and abides green all the Winter.

Government and virtues : Saturn owns it. It is generally used against infirmities of the Spleen. It helps the stranguary, and wasteth the stone in the bladder, and is good against the yellow jaundice and the hiccough; but the juice of it in women hinders conception. Matthiolus saith, That if a dram of the dust that is on the back-side of the leaves be mixed with half a dram of amber in powder, and taken with the juice of purslain or plantain, it helps the gonorrhea speedily, and that the herb and root being boiled and taken, helps all melancholy diseases, and those especially that arise from the French diseases. Camerarius saith, That the distilled water thereof being drank, is very effectual against the stone in the reins and bladder; and that the lye that is made of the ashes thereof being drank for some time together, helps splenetic persons. It is used in outward remedies for the same purpose.

  By PanEris using Melati.

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