Daphne Mezereum.—This shrub is a kind of Spurge Laurel. It is cultivated in gardens on account of the beautiful early flowers, in February and March. The flowers come before the leaves. It grows four feet high, and sends off several branches. The leaves are few, tender, and lance- shaped. The flowers are in thick clusters, each composed of a single petal, cut into four oval segments, of a bright red colour. They produce numerous red berries, which are black when ripe. They are very inviting, but poisonous, and they should be kept beyond the reach of children.

Herbal Remedies and Medicinal Uses of Mezeron:

It has been used with success in syphilis. Dr. Home not only found the decoction to cure scirrhous tumours, which remain after lues venerea, and after the use of mercury; but it healed also some scirrhous tumours from other causes; he found it useful in cutaneous eruptions. In difficult swallowing caused by paralytic affections, Dr Withering tested its efficacy. The patient was directed to chew a thin slice of the root as often as she could bear it, and in about a month she recovered the power to swallow. For three years she had been able to swallow liquids and solids only very imperfectly.

The Russian peasantry take 30 or 40 of the blossoms as a purgative, and give them as an emetic to children with hooping cough; in this country 8 or 10 of them will cause purging. The bark, both of the root and the stem, is used medicinally. Internally taken, it is stimulant, having a tendency towards the side and kidneys. It is of considerable efficacy in chronic rheumatism, and scrofula; and also in syphilis, combined with Sarsaparilla, as a decoction. Boil 2 drachms of the bark, and half an ounce of liquorice root in three pints of water down to two. The dose is 3 to 6 ounces, two or three times a day.

It has been used instead of a perpetual blister with much less pain and inconvenience. A square piece of the bark, an inch long, and an inch broad, macerated in a little vinegar, is applied to the skin, over which is bound a leaf of Ivy or Plantain; renewed till it cauterizes the part, and brings on a serious discharge. As a plaster it may be applied behind the ears to relieve the eyes. An ointment of the juice of the leaves, flowers, and bark, is valuable for dressing issues, etcetera.; it is superior to Savine or any other ointment for this purpose.

Important Disclaimer:   The information contained on this web site is for educational purposes only. It is not intended to diagnose, treat, or cure any diseases. Any information presented is not a substitute for professional medical advice and should not take the place of any prescribed medication. Please do not use this information to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease without consultation with your physician.

This page and the rest of the encyclopedia of medicinal herbs was reproduced from old herbals written in the 1700 and 1800s. They are of historical interest to show the traditional uses of various herbs based on folk medicine and ancient wisdom. However the traditional uses for these herbs have not been confirmed by medical science and in some cases may actually be dangerous. Do not use the these herbs for any use, medicinal or otherwise, without first consulting a qualified doctor.

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