Tustan, or Park Leaves

Descript : It hath brownish shining round stalks, crested the length thereof, rising two by two, and sometimes three feet high, branching forth even from the bottom, having divers joints, and at each of them two fair large leaves standing, of a dark blueish green colour on the upper side, and of a yellowish green underneath, turning reddish toward Autumn. At the top of the stalks stand large yellow flowers, and heads with seed, which being greenish at the first and afterwards reddish, turn to be of a blackish purple colour when they are ripe, with small brownish seed within them,and they yield a reddish juice or liquor, somewhat resinous, and of a harsh and stypick taste, as the leaves also and the flowers be, although much less, but do not yield such a clear claret wine colour, as some say it doth, the root is brownish, somewhat great, hard and woody, spreading well in the ground.

Place : It grows in many woods, groves, and woody grounds, as parks and forests, and by hedge-sides in many places in this land, as in Hampstead wood, by Ratley in Essex, in the wilds of Kent, and in many other places needless to recite.

Time : It flowers later than St. John's or St. Peter's-wort.

Government and virtues : It is an herb of Saturn, and a most noble anti-venerean. Tustan purges choleric humours, as St. Peter's-wort is said to do, for therein it works the same effects, both to help the sciatica and gout, and to heal burning by fire; it stays all the bleedings of wounds, if either the green herb be bruised, or the powder of the dry be applied thereto. It hath been accounted, and certainly it is, a sovereign herb to heal either wound or sore, either outwardly or inwardly, and therefore always used in drinks, lotions, green wounds, ulcers, or old sores, in all balms, oils, ointments, or any other sorts of which the continual experience of former ages hath confirmed the use thereof to be admirably good, though it be not so much in use now, as when physicians and surgeons were so wise as to use herbs more than now they do.

  By PanEris using Melati.

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