Thank you for stopping by the Apothecary! Here I will share my book research on herbal remedies, information on ovarian cancer, and historical tidbits that people employed to help themselves live longer and more comfortably.
Herbs/plants were (and still are) used in various ways as cures to disease and injury:
Poultices: a paste applied externally and often wrapped up with linen strips
“A traditional poultice is made by combining an infusion of healing herbs or plants with binding agents such as baking soda and water to form a paste. This material is applied directly to the affected area so that the beneficial compounds can penetrate the skin tissue and help draw out harmful substances.” https://natureslinkwellness.com/salves-poultices/
Salves/Balms: like a poultice but tends to have a waxy or oil base and it is rubbed directly into the skin without the bandage holding it in place
Brews/Infusions: drinks with the herb boiled or soaked in it to release the healing components. Yarrow, pictured here, was and still is used as a “tea” to help stomach and menstrual cramping.
Tinctures: concentrated liquid usually ingested
“Tinctures are concentrated herbal extracts made by soaking the bark, berries, leaves (dried or fresh), or roots from one or more plants in alcohol or vinegar.
The alcohol or vinegar pulls out the active ingredients in the plant parts, concentrating them as a liquid.” https://www.healthline.com/health/what-is-a-tincture
At Beltane (May 1st) young women in rural Scotland would roll in the dawn dew, letting it wet their faces. This was thought to bring beauty and health for the year to come.
“All that man needs for health and healing has been provided by God in nature, the challenge of science is to find it.” Philippus Theophrastrus Bombast that of Aureolus ~ Paracelsus (1493-1541)