[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: VMS -- Botanical (f07v) Pulmonaria

Hi Dana,

OK: I've gone through all your links (thanks very much!) - and the idea seems to be this:-

The general name for the plant (I'm unapologetically looking for text cribs) is:-
pulmonaria (Latin)
polmonaria (Italian)
pulmonaire or "herbe aux poumons" (French)
Lungwort (English)
lungenkraut (German)
longkruid (Dutch)
pisani pljucnik (Czech) [Windows won't let me paste the accent on the c, sorry]

Paracelsus revived the (much older) Doctrine of Signatures, which held that plants showing a visual similarity with a medical condition would help to treat it. The speckling on this plant looks a bit like spots on diseased lungs - hence lungwort, etc. However: Paracelsus only really hit his stride in the 1530s, so be careful about what you infer.

There are two well-known species of lungwort (from the time?) - Jerusalem Cowslip and Bethlehem Sage. One (or both?) is known as "soldiers and sailors", because it has pink and blue flowers mixed together.

Open questions (hopefully easy ones):-
(1) Does lungwort appear in Dioscorides?
(2) Does lungwort appear in Hildegard von Bingen's "Physica"?
(3) When were the two species of lungwort named?
(4) Are there alternate local names for them around the Mediterranean?
(5) When lungwort appears in [alchemical[ herbals of the 15th Century, does it have any alternative names?
(6) Do those same places describe how/when to pick it?
(7) Do those same places describe how/when to prepare it?

Cheers, .....Nick Pelling.....