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(archangelica Officinalis Hoffm)
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Least Viewed Herbs

Finocchio
Southernwood
(archangelica Officinalis Hoffm)
And There Is Pansies That's For Thoughts
Acorn
Poppy
Bluebell (wild Hyacinth)
Asparagus
Anemone (wood)
House Leek (crassulaceoe)



Bilberry (whortleberry Or Whinberry)








This fruit, which belongs to the Cranberry order of plants, grows
abundantly throughout England in heathy [52] and mountainous
districts. The small-branched shrub bears globular, wax-like
flowers, and black berries, which are covered, when quite fresh,
with a grey bloom. In the West of England they are popularly
called whorts, and they ripen about the time of St. James' Feast,
July 25th. Other names for the fruit are Blueberry, Bulberry,
Hurtleberry, and Huckleberry. The title Whinberry has been
acquired from its growing on Whins, or Heaths; and Bilberry
signifies dark coloured; whence likewise comes Blackwort as
distinguished in its aspect from the Cowberry and the Cranberry.
By a corruption the original word Myrtleberry has suffered change
of its initial M into W. (Whortlebery.) In the middle ages the
Myrtleberry was used in medicine and cookery, to which berry the
Whortleberry bears a strong resemblance. It is agreeable to the
taste, and may be made into tarts, but proves mawkish unless
mixed with some more acid fruit.

The Bilberry (Vaccinium Myrtillus) is an admirable astringent,
and should be included as such among the domestic medicines of
the housewife. If some good brandy be poured over two handfuls
of the fruit in a bottle, this will make an extract which continually
improves by being kept. Obstinate diarrhoea may be cured by
giving doses of a tablespoonful of this extract taken with a
wineglassful of warm water, and repeated at intervals of two hours
whilst needed, even for the more severe cases of dysenteric
diarrhoea. The berries contain chemically much tannin. Their stain
on the lips may be quickly effaced by sucking at a lemon. In
Devonshire they are eaten at table with cream. The Irish call them
frawns. If the first tender leaves are properly gathered and dried,
they can scarcely be [53] distinguished from good tea. Moor game
live on these berries in the autumn. Their juice will stain paper or
linen purple:--

Sanguineo splendore rosas vaccinia nigro,
Induit, et dulci violas ferrugine pingit.
CLAUDIAN.

They are also called in some counties, Blaeberries, Truckleberries,
and Blackhearts.

The extract of Bilberry is found to be a very useful application for
curing such skin diseases as scaly eczema, and other eczema
which is not moist or pustulous; also for burns and scalds. Some of
the extract is to be laid thickly on the cleansed skin with a camel
hairbrush, and a thin layer of cotton wool to be spread over it, the
whole being fastened with a calico or gauze bandage. This should
be changed gently once a day.

Another Vaccinium (oxycoccos), the Marsh Whortleberry, or
Cranberry, or Fenberry--from growing in fens--is found in peat
bogs, chiefly in the North. This is a low plant with straggling wiry
stems, and solitary terminal bright red flowers, of which the
segments are bent back in a singular manner. Its fruit likewise
makes excellent tarts, and forms a considerable article of
commerce at Langtown, on the borders of Cumberland. The fruit
stalks are crooked at the top, and before the blossom expands they
resemble the head and neck of a crane.





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Previous: Betony



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