Nettle: A Translation from the Garden of Blossoms


From the baql genus of perennial plants, known to the layman as the “stinger” and “Qurays”. There are two types: rough and smooth, and both with their aerial parts and seeds are used by doctors.

It appears on rough, untended wasteland, and the rough variety stings the skin of those who touch it.

Its Nature:

Hot in the early third degree and dry in the second. Except the seeds, which are less dry than the aerial parts.

Characteristics and Uses:

Brilliant, opening, evacuating and burning, as a poultice alongside radish (when boiled) is useful against the stiffness of arthritis, and its seeds as a poultice are used for infirmity. As a decocted powder it is good on sores and wounds, and can be mixed with salt in a poultice. Its leaves can be crushed and put on the head to heal from venom, and when eaten with eggs and onion, it opens the womb and increases fertility, and the same applies to the seeds.


Onion Seed

Translation from The Garden of Blossoms, by al-Wazir al-Ghassani. A 16th century pharmacopeia written in Fes. Translated by Miriam Hicklin.

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