Taraxacum / Paardenbloem

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Dandelion / A Modern Herbal Mrs. M. Grieve 1931

Botanical: Taraxacum officinale (WEBER)

Family: N.O. Compositae

---Synonyms---Priest's Crown. Swine's Snout.

---Parts Used---Root, leaves.

The Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale, Weber, T. Densleonis, Desf; Leontodon taraxacum, Linn.), though not occurring in the Southern Hemisphere, is at home in all parts of the north temperate zone, in pastures, meadows and on waste ground, and is so plentiful that farmers everywhere find it a troublesome weed, for though its flowers are more conspicuous in the earlier months of the summer, it may be found in bloom, and consequently also prolifically dispersing its seeds, almost throughout the year.

---Description---From its thick tap root, dark brown, almost black on the outside though white and milky within, the long jagged leaves rise directly, radiating from it to form a rosette Iying close upon the ground, each leaf being grooved and constructed so that all the rain falling on it is conducted straight to the centre of the rosette and thus to the root which is, therefore, always kept well watered. The maximum amount of water is in this manner directed towards the proper region for utilization by the root, which but for this arrangement would not obtain sufficient moisture, the leaves being spread too close to the ground for the water to penetrate.

The leaves are shiny and without hairs, the margin of each leaf cut into great jagged teeth, either upright or pointing somewhat backwards, and these teeth are themselves cut here and there into lesser teeth. It is this somewhat fanciful resemblance to the canine teeth of a lion that (it is generally assumed) gives the plant its most familiar name of Dandelion, which is a corruption of the French Dent de Lion, an equivalent of this name being found not only in its former specific Latin name Dens leonis and in the Greek name for the genus to which Linnaeus assigned it, Leontodon, but also in nearly all the languages of Europe.

There is some doubt, however, as to whether it was really the shape of the leaves that provided the original notion, as there is really no similarity between them, but the leaves may perhaps be said to resemble the angular jaw of a lion fully supplied with teeth. Some authorities have suggested that the yellow flowers might be compared to the golden teeth of the heraldic lion, while others say that the whiteness of the root is the feature which provides the resemblance. Flückiger and Hanbury in Pharmacographia, say that the name was conferred by Wilhelm, a surgeon, who was so much impressed by the virtues of the plant that he likened it to Dens leonis. In the Ortus Sanitatis, 1485, under 'Dens Leonis,' there is a monograph of half a page (unaccompanied by any illustration) which concludes:

'The Herb was much employed by Master Wilhelmus, a surgeon, who on account of its virtues, likened it to "eynem lewen zan, genannt zu latin Dens leonis" (a lion's tooth, called in Latin Dens leonis).'

In the pictures of the old herbals, for instance, the one in Brunfels' Contrafayt Kreuterbuch, 1532, the leaves very much resemble a lion's tooth. The root is not illustrated at all in the old herbals, as only the herb was used at that time.

The name of the genus, Taraxacum, is derived from the Greek taraxos (disorder), and akos (remedy), on account of the curative action of the plant. A possible alternative derivation of Taraxacum is suggested in The Treasury of Botany:

'The generic name is possibly derived from the Greek taraxo ("I have excited" or "caused") and achos (pain), in allusion to the medicinal effects of the plant.'

There are many varieties of Dandelion leaves; some are deeply cut into segments, in others the segments or lobes form a much less conspicuous feature, and are sometimes almost entire.

The shining, purplish flower-stalks rise straight from the root, are leafless, smooth and hollow and bear single heads of flowers. On picking the flowers, a bitter, milky juice exudes from the broken edges of the stem, which is present throughout the plant, and which when it comes into contact with the hand, turns to a brown stain that is rather difficult to remove.

Each bloom is made up of numerous strapshaped florets of a bright golden yellow. This strap-shaped corolla is notched at the edge into five teeth, each tooth representing a petal, and lower down is narrowed into a claw-like tube, which rests on the singlechambered ovary containing a single ovule. In this tiny tube is a copious supply of nectar, which more than half fills it, and the presence of which provides the incentive for the visits of many insects, among whom the bee takes first rank. The Dandelion takes an important place among honey-producing plants, as it furnishes considerable quantities of both pollen and nectar in the early spring, when the bees' harvest from fruit trees is nearly over. It is also important from the beekeeper's point of view, because not only does it flower most in spring, no matter how cool the weather may be, but a small succession of bloom is also kept up until late autumn, so that it is a source of honey after the main flowers have ceased to bloom, thus delaying the need for feeding the colonies of bees with artificial food.

Many little flies also are to be found visiting the Dandelion to drink the lavishly-supplied nectar. By carefully watching, it has been ascertained that no less than ninety-three different kinds of insects are in the habit of frequenting it. The stigma grows up through the tube formed by the anthers, pushing the pollen before it, and insects smearing themselves with this pollen carry it to the stigmas of other flowers already expanded, thus insuring cross-fertilization. At the base of each flower-head is a ring of narrow, green bracts the involucre. Some of these stand up to support the florets, others hang down to form a barricade against such small insects as might crawl up the stem and injure the bloom without taking a share in its fertilization, as the winged insects do.

The blooms are very sensitive to weather conditions: in fine weather, all the parts are outstretched, but directly rain threatens the whole head closes up at once. It closes against the dews of night, by five o'clock in the evening, being prepared for its night's sleep, opening again at seven in the morning though as this opening and closing is largely dependent upon the intensity of the light, the time differs somewhat in different latitudes and at different seasons.

When the whole head has matured, all the florets close up again within the green sheathing bracts that lie beneath, and the bloom returns very much to the appearance it had in the bud. Its shape being then somewhat reminiscent of the snout of a pig, it is termed in some districts 'Swine's Snout.' The withered, yellow petals are, however soon pushed off in a bunch, as the seeds, crowned with their tufts of hair, mature, and one day, under the influence of sun and wind the 'Swine's Snout' becomes a large gossamer ball, from its silky whiteness a very noticeable feature. It is made up of myriads of plumed seeds or pappus, ready to be blown off when quite ripe by the slightest breeze, and forms the 'clock' of the children, who by blowing at it till all the seeds are released, love to tell themselves the time of day by the number of puffs necessary to disperse every seed. When all the seeds have flown, the receptacle or disc on which they were placed remains bare, white, speckled and surrounded by merely the drooping remnants of the sheathing bracts, and we can see why the plant received another of its popular names, 'Priest's Crown,' common in the Middle Ages, when a priest's shorn head was a familiar object.

Small birds are very fond of the seeds of the Dandelion and pigs devour the whole plant greedily. Goats will eat it, but sheep and cattle do not care for it, though it is said to increase the milk of cows when eaten by them. Horses refuse to touch this plant, not appreciating its bitter juice. It is valuable food for rabbits and may be given them from April to September forming excellent food in spring and at breeding seasons in particular.

The young leaves of the Dandelion make an agreeable and wholesome addition to spring salads and are often eaten on the Continent, especially in France. The full-grown leaves should not be taken, being too bitter, but the young leaves, especially if blanched, make an excellent salad, either alone or in combination with other plants, lettuce, shallot tops or chives.

Young Dandelion leaves make delicious sandwiches, the tender leaves being laid between slices of bread and butter and sprinkled with salt. The addition of a little lemon-juice and pepper varies the flavour. The leaves should always be torn to pieces, rather than cut, in order to keep the flavour.

John Evelyn, in his Acetana, says: 'With thie homely salley, Hecate entertained Theseus.' In Wales, they grate or chop up Dandelion roots, two years old, and mix them with the leaves in salad. The seed of a special broad-leaved variety of Dandelion is sold by seedsmen for cultivation for salad purposes. Dandelion can be blanched in the same way as endive, and is then very delicate in flavour. If covered with an ordinary flower-pot during the winter, the pot being further buried under some rough stable litter, the young leaves sprout when there is a dearth of saladings and prove a welcome change in early spring. Cultivated thus, Dandelion is only pleasantly bitter, and if eaten while the leaves are quite young, the centre rib of the leaf is not at all unpleasant to the taste. When older the rib is tough and not nice to eat. If the flower-buds of plants reserved in a corner of the garden for salad purposes are removed at once and the leaves carefully cut, the plants will last through the whole winter.

The young leaves may also be boiled as a vegetable, spinach fashion, thoroughly drained, sprinkled with pepper and salt, moistened with soup or butter and served very hot. If considered a little too bitter, use half spinach, but the Dandelion must be partly cooked first in this case, as it takes longer than spinach. As a variation, some grated nutmeg or garlic, a teaspoonful of chopped onion or grated lemon peel can be added to the greens when they are cooked. A simple vegetable soup may also be made with Dandelions.

The dried Dandelion leaves are also employed as an ingredient in many digestive or diet drinks and herb beers. Dandelion Beer is a rustic fermented drink common in many parts of the country and made also in Canada. Workmen in the furnaces and potteries of the industrial towns of the Midlands have frequent resource to many of the tonic Herb Beers, finding them cheaper and less intoxicating than ordinary beer, and Dandelion stout ranks as a favourite. An agreeable and wholesome fermented drink is made from Dandelions, Nettles and Yellow Dock.

In Berkshire and Worcestershire, the flowers are used in the preparation of a beverage known as Dandelion Wine. This is made by pouring a gallon of boiling water over a gallon of the flowers. After being well stirred, it is covered with a blanket and allowed to stand for three days, being stirred again at intervals, after which it is strained and the liquor boiled for 30 minutes, with the addition of 3 1/2 lb. of loaf sugar, a little ginger sliced, the rind of 1 orange and 1 lemon sliced. When cold, a little yeast is placed in it on a piece of toast, producing fermentation. It is then covered over and allowed to stand two days until it has ceased 'working,' when it is placed in a cask, well bunged down for two months before bottling. This wine is suggestive of sherry slightly flat, and has the deserved reputation of being an excellent tonic, extremely good for the blood.

The roasted roots are largely used to form Dandelion Coffee, being first thoroughly cleaned, then dried by artificial heat, and slightly roasted till they are the tint of coffee, when they are ground ready for use. The roots are taken up in the autumn, being then most fitted for this purpose. The prepared powder is said to be almost indistinguishable from real coffee, and is claimed to be an improvement to inferior coffee, which is often an adulterated product. Of late years, Dandelion Coffee has come more into use in this country, being obtainable at most vegetarian restaurants and stores. Formerly it used occasionally to be given for medicinal purposes, generally mixed with true coffee to give it a better flavour. The ground root was sometimes mixed with chocolate for a similar purpose. Dandelion Coffee is a natural beverage without any of the injurious effects that ordinary tea and coffee have on the nerves and digestive organs. It exercises a stimulating influence over the whole system, helping the liver and kidneys to do their work and keeping the bowels in a healthy condition, so that it offers great advantages to dyspeptics and does not cause wakefulness.

---Parts Used Medicinally---The root, fresh and dried, the young tops. All parts of the plant contain a somewhat bitter, milky juice (latex), but the juice of the root being still more powerful is the part of the plant most used for medicinal purposes.

---History---The first mention of the Dandelion as a medicine is in the works of the Arabian physicians of the tenth and eleventh centuries, who speak of it as a sort of wild Endive, under the name of Taraxcacon. In this country, we find allusion to it in the Welsh medicines of the thirteenth century. Dandelion was much valued as a medicine in the times of Gerard and Parkinson, and is still extensively employed.

Dandelion roots have long been largely used on the Continent, and the plant is cultivated largely in India as a remedy for liver complaints. The root is perennial and tapering, simple or more or less branched, attaining in a good soil a length of a foot or more and 1/2 inch to an inch in diameter. Old roots divide at the crown into several heads. The root is fleshy and brittle, externally of a dark brown, internally white and abounding in an inodorous milky juice of bitter, but not disagreeable taste.

Only large, fleshy and well-formed roots should be collected, from plants two years old, not slender, forked ones. Roots produced in good soil are easier to dig up without breaking, and are thicker and less forked than those growing on waste places and by the roadside. Collectors should, therefore only dig in good, free soil, in moisture and shade, from meadow-land. Dig up in wet weather, but not during frost, which materially lessens the activity of the roots. Avoid breaking the roots, using a long trowel or a fork, lifting steadily and carefully. Shake off as much of the earth as possible and then cleanse the roots, the easiest way being to leave them in a basket in a running stream so that the water covers them, for about an hour, or shake them, bunched, in a tank of clean water. Cut off the crowns of leaves, but be careful in so doing not to leave any scales on the top. Do not cut or slice the roots or the valuable milky juice on which their medicinal value depends will be wasted by bleeding.

---Cultivation---As only large, well-formed roots are worth collecting, some people prefer to grow Dandelions as a crop, as by this means large roots are insured and they are more easily dug, generally being ploughed up. About 4 lb. of seed to the acre should be allowed, sown in drills, 1 foot apart. The crops should be kept clean by hoeing, and all flower-heads should be picked off as soon as they appear, as otherwise the grower's own land and that of his neighbours will be smothered with the weed when the seeds ripen. The yield should be 4 or 5 tons of fresh roots to the acre in the second year. Dandelion roots shrink very much in drying, losing about 76 per cent of their weight, so that 100 parts of fresh roots yield only about 22 parts of dry material. Under favourable conditions, yields at the rate of 1,000 to 1,500 lb. of dry roots per acre have been obtained from second-year plants cultivated.

Dandelion root can only be economically collected when a meadow in which it is abundant is ploughed up. Under such circumstances the roots are necessarily of different ages and sizes, the seeds sowing themselves in successive years. The roots then collected after washing and drying, have to be sorted into different grades. The largest, from the size of a lead pencil upwards, are cut into straight pieces 2 to 3 inches long, the smaller side roots being removed, these are sold at a higher price as the finest roots. The smaller roots fetch a less price, and the trimmings are generally cut small, sold at a lower price and used for making Dandelion Coffee. Every part of the root is thus used. The root before being dried should have every trace of the leaf-bases removed as their presence lessens the value of the root.

In collecting cultivated Dandelion advantage is obtained if the seeds are all sown at one time, as greater uniformity in the size of the root is obtainable, and in deep soil free from stones, the seedlings will produce elongated, straight roots with few branches, especially if allowed to be somewhat crowded on the same principles that coppice trees produce straight trunks. Time is also saved in digging up the roots which can thus be sold at prices competing with those obtained as the result of cheaper labour on the Continent. The edges of fields when room is allowed for the plough-horses to turn, could easily be utilized if the soil is good and free from stones for both Dandelion and Burdock, as the roots are usually much branched in stony ground, and the roots are not generally collected until October when the harvest is over. The roots gathered in this month have stored up their food reserve of Inulin, and when dried present a firm appearance, whilst if collected in spring, when the food reserve in the root is used up for the leaves and flowers, the dried root then presents a shrivelled and porous appearance which renders it unsaleable. The medicinal properties of the root are, therefore, necessarily greater in proportion in the spring. Inulin being soluble in hot water, the solid extract if made by boiling the root, often contains a large quantity of it, which is deposited in the extract as it cools.

The roots are generally dried whole, but the largest ones may sometimes be cut transversely into pieces 3 to 6 inches long. Collected wild roots are, however, seldom large enough to necessitate cutting. Drying will probably take about a fortnight. When finished, the roots should be hard and brittle enough to snap, and the inside of the roots white, not grey

The roots should be kept in a dry place after drying, to avoid mould, preferably in tins to prevent the attacks of moths and beetles. Dried Dandelion is exceedingly liable to the attacks of maggots and should not be kept beyond one season.

Dried Dandelion root is 1/2 inch or less in thickness, dark brown, shrivelled, with wrinkles running lengthwise, often in a spiral direction; when quite dry, it breaks easily with a short, corky fracture, showing a very thick, white bark, surrounding a wooden column. The latter is yellowish, very porous, without pith or rays. A rather broad but indistinct cambium zone separates the wood from the bark, which latter exhibits numerous well-defined, concentric layers, due to the milk vessels. This structure is quite characteristic and serves to distinguish Dandelion roots from other roots like it. There are several flowers easily mistaken for the Dandelion when in blossom, but these have either hairy leaves or branched flower-stems, and the roots differ either in structure or shape.

Dried Dandelion root somewhat resembles Pellitory and Liquorice roots, but Pellitory differs in having oil glands and also a large radiate wood, and Liquorice has also a large radiate wood and a sweet taste.

The root of Hawkbit (Leontodon hispidus) is sometimes substituted for Dandelion root. It is a plant with hairy, not smooth leaves, and the fresh root is tough, breaking with difficulty and rarely exuding much milky juice. Some kinds of Dock have also been substituted, and also Chicory root. The latter is of a paler colour, more bitter and has the laticiferous vessels in radiating lines. In the United States it is often substituted for Dandelion. Dock roots have a prevailing yellowish colour and an astringent taste.

During recent years, a small form of a Dandelion root has been offered by Russian firms, who state that it is sold and used as Dandelion in that country. This root is always smaller than the root of T. officinale, has smaller flowers, and the crown of the root has often a tuft of brown woolly hairs between the leaf bases at the crown of the root, which are never seen in the Dandelion plant in this country, and form a characteristic distinction, for the root shows similar concentric, horny rings in the thick white bark as well as a yellow porous woody centre. These woolly hairs are mentioned in Greenish's Materia Medica, and also in the British Pharmaceutical Codex, as a feature of Dandelion root, but no mention is made of them in the Pharmacographia, nor in the British Pharmacopceia or United States Pharmacopceia, and it is probable, therefore, that Russian specimens have been used for describing the root, and that the root with brown woolly hairs belongs to some other species of Taraxacum.

---Chemical Constituents---The chief constituents of Dandelion root are Taraxacin, acrystalline, bitter substance, of which the yield varies in roots collected at different seasons, and Taraxacerin, an acrid resin, with Inulin (a sort of sugar which replaces starch in many of the Dandelion family, Compositae), gluten, gum and potash. The root contains no starch, but early in the year contains much uncrystallizable sugar and laevulin, which differs from Inulin in being soluble in cold water. This diminishes in quantity during the summer and becomes Inulin in the autumn. The root may contain as much as 24 per cent. In the fresh root, the Inulin is present in the cell-sap, but in the dry root it occurs as an amorphodus, transparent solid, which is only slightly soluble in cold water, but soluble in hot water.

There is a difference of opinion as to the best time for collecting the roots. The British Pharmacopceia considers the autumn dug root more bitter than the spring root, and that as it contains about 25 per cent insoluble Inulin, it is to be preferred on this account to the spring root, and it is, therefore, directed that in England the root should be collected between September and February, it being considered to be in perfection for Extract making in the month of November.

Bentley, on the other hand, contended that it is more bitter in March and most of all in July, but that as in the latter month it would generally be inconvenient for digging it, it should be dug in the spring, when the yield of Taraxacin, the bitter soluble principle, is greatest.

On account of the variability of the constituents of the plant according to the time of year when gathered, the yield and composition of the extract are very variable. If gathered from roots collected in autumn, the resulting product yields a turbid solution with water; if from spring-collected roots, the aqueous solution will be clear and yield but very little sediment on standing, because of the conversion of the Inulin into Laevulose and sugar at this active period of the plant's life.

In former days, Dandelion Juice was the favourite preparation both in official and domestic medicine. Provincial druggists sent their collectors for the roots and expressed the juice while these were quite fresh. Many country druggists prided themselves on their Dandelion Juice. The most active preparations of Dandelion, the Juice (Succus Taraxaci) and the Extract (Extractum Taraxaci), are made from the bruised fresh root. The Extract prepared from the fresh root is sometimes almost devoid of bitterness. The dried root alone was official in the United States Pharmacopoeia.

The leaves are not often used, except for making Herb-Beer, but a medicinal tincture is sometimes made from the entire plant gathered in the early summer. It is made with proof spirit.

When collecting the seeds care should be taken when drying them in the sun, to cover them with coarse muslin, as otherwise the down will carry them away. They are best collected in the evening, towards sunset, or when the damp air has caused the heads to close up.

The tops should be cut on a dry day, when quite free of rain or dew, and all insect-eaten or stained leaves rejected.

---Medicinal Action and Uses---Diuretic, tonic and slightly aperient. It is a general stimulant to the system, but especially to the urinary organs, and is chiefly used in kidney and liver disorders.

Dandelion is not only official but is used in many patent medicines. Not being poisonous, quite big doses of its preparations may be taken. Its beneficial action is best obtained when combined with other agents.

The tincture made from the tops may be taken in doses of 10 to 15 drops in a spoonful of water, three times daily.

It is said that its use for liver complaints was assigned to the plant largely on the doctrine of signatures, because of its bright yellow flowers of a bilious hue.

In the hepatic complaints of persons long resident in warm climates, Dandelion is said to afford very marked relief. A broth of Dandelion roots, sliced and stewed in boiling water with some leaves of Sorrel and the yolk of an egg, taken daily for some months, has been known to cure seemingly intractable cases of chronic liver congestion.

A strong decoction is found serviceable in stone and gravel: the decoction may be made by boiling 1 pint of the sliced root in 20 parts of water for 15 minutes, straining this when cold and sweetening with brown sugar or honey. A small teacupful may be taken once or twice a day.

Dandelion is used as a bitter tonic in atonic dyspepsia, and as a mild laxative in habitual constipation. When the stomach is irritated and where active treatment would be injurious, the decoction or extract of Dandelion administered three or four times a day, will often prove a valuable remedy. It has a good effect in increasing the appetite and promoting digestion.

Dandelion combined with other active remedies has been used in cases of dropsy and for induration of the liver, and also on the Continent for phthisis and some cutaneous diseases. A decoction of 2 OZ. of the herb or root in 1 quart of water, boiled down to a pint, is taken in doses of one wineglassful every three hours for scurvy, scrofula, eczema and all eruptions on the surface of the body.

---Preparations and Dosages---Fluid extract, B.P., 1/2 to 2 drachms. Solid extract, B.P. 5 to 15 grains. Juice, B.P., 1 to 2 drachms. Leontodin, 2 to 4 grains.

---Dandelion Tea---Infuse 1 OZ. of Dandelion in a pint of boiling water for 10 minutes; decant, sweeten with honey, and drink several glasses in the course of the day. The use of this tea is efficacious in bilious affections, and is also much approved of in the treatment of dropsy.

Or take 2 OZ. of freshly-sliced Dandelion root, and boil in 2 pints of water until it comes to 1 pint; then add 1 OZ. of compound tincture of Horseradish. Dose, from 2 to 4 OZ. Use in a sluggish state of the liver.

Or 1 OZ. Dandelion root, 1 OZ. Black Horehound herb, 1/2 OZ. Sweet Flag root, 1/4 OZ. Mountain Flax. Simmer the whole in 3 pints of water down to 1 1/2 pint, strain and take a wineglassful after meals for biliousness and dizziness.

---For Gall Stones---1 OZ. Dandelion root, 1 OZ. Parsley root, 1 OZ. Balm herb, 1/2 OZ. Ginger root, 1/2 OZ. Liquorice root. Place in 2 quarts of water and gently simmer down to 1 quart, strain and take a wineglassful every two hours.

For a young child suffering from jaundice: 1 OZ. Dandelion root, 1/2 oz. Ginger root, 1/2 oz. Caraway seed, 1/2 oz. Cinnamon bark, 1/4 oz. Senna leaves. Gently boil in 3 pints of water down to 1 1/2 pint, strain, dissolve 1/2 lb. sugar in hot liquid, bring to a boil again, skim all impurities that come to the surface when clear, put on one side to cool, and give frequently in teaspoonful doses.

---A Liver and Kidney Mixture---1 OZ. Broom tops, 1/2 oz. Juniper berries, 1/2 oz. Dandelion root, 1 1/2 pint water. Boil in gredients for 10 minutes, then strain and adda small quantity of cayenne. Dose, 1 tablespoonful, three times a day.

---A Medicine for Piles---1 OZ. Long-leaved Plantain, 1 OZ. Dandelion root, 1/2 oz. Polypody root, 1 OZ. Shepherd's Purse. Add 3 pints of water, boil down to half the quantity, strain, and add 1 OZ. of tincture of Rhubarb. Dose, a wineglassful three times a day. Celandine ointment to be applied at same time.

Taraxaci radix cum herba / Dandelion root with herb / Commision E

Latin Name: Taraxacum officinale

Pharmacopeial Name: Taraxaci radix cum herba

Other Names: common dandelion, lion's tooth


Dandelion is a perennial herb native throughout the northern hemisphere with many varieties and microspecies, found growing wild in meadows, pastures and waste ground in temperate zones (Grieve, 1979; Leung and Foster, 1996; Wichtl and Bisset, 1994). The material of commerce comes from both wild and cultivated plants, mainly from Bulgaria, Hungary, Poland, Romania, the former Yugoslavia, and the United Kingdom (BHP, 1996; Wichtl and Bisset, 1994). The material used in Indian Ayurvedic and Unani medicines grows in the temperate Himalayas from five to twelve thousand feet and in Tibet, though it is also imported (Kapoor, 1990; Karnick, 1994; Nadkarni, 1976).

Dandelion has a long history of traditional use in many systems of medicine in the treatment of hepatobiliary problems. The root is traditionally used to treat liver and spleen ailments (Bradley, 1992; Leung and Foster, 1996). The genus name Taraxacum is derived from the Greek taraxos (disorder), and akos (remedy). The name dandelion is derived from its original Greek genus name leontodon, meaning lion's teeth. Its use in traditional Arabian medicine is first mentioned in the tenth century C.E. (Grieve, 1979). Dandelion root was formerly official in the United States National Formulary (Leung and Foster, 1996). It is official in the national pharmacopeias of Austria and the Czech Republic, and also in the Ayurvedic Pharmacopoeia, the British Herbal Pharmacopoeia, the British Herbal Compendium, the German Pharmacopoeial Codex, the German Standard License, and the Commission E (BAnz, 1998; BHP, 1996; Bradley, 1992; Braun, 1991; DAC, 1986; Karnick, 1994; Meyer-Buchtela, 1999; Newall et al., 1996; AB, 1981; Wichtl and Bisset, 1994). ESCOP has also published monographs on the leaf and root (ESCOP, 1997).

Its uses in North American aboriginal medicines are well documented. The Iroquois people prepared infusions and decoctions of the root and herb to treat kidney disease, dropsy, and dermatological problems (Herrick, 1977). The Ojibwe people of Wisconsin prepared an infusion of the root to treat heartburn (Smith, 1932). The Rappahannock people of the eastern United States prepared an infusion of the root as a blood tonic and to treat dyspepsia (Speck et al., 1942). The Bella Coola people of British Columbia prepared a decoction of the roots as an analgesic and to treat stomach pain (Smith, 1929).

In Germany, dandelion root with herb is licensed as a standard medicinal tea to treat biliary disorders, digestive and gastrointestinal complaints, and to stimulate diuresis. Dandelion herb and dandelion root with herb are also approved in the Commission E monographs. Dosage forms, including aqueous decoction and infusion, expressed juice of fresh plant, and hydroalcoholic tincture are used as monopreparations and integral components of about fifty prepared cholagogue, biliary, gastrointestinal, and urological remedies (BAnz, 1998; Bradley, 1992; Braun, 1991; Meyer-Buchtela, 1999; Schilcher, 1997; Wichtl and Bisset, 1994). In the United States, dandelion root and leaf preparations are used as choleretic, diuretic, and tonic components in a wide range of compound dietary supplement and health food products.

The approved modern therapeutic applications for dandelion are supportable based on its long history of use in well established systems of traditional medicine, phytochemical investigations, and pharmacological studies in animals. For a comprehensive review, see Hobbs (1985).

Pharmacopeial grade dandelion leaf must be composed of the dried leaves collected before flowering. It must contain not less than 20% water-soluble extractive, among other quantitative standards. Botanical identity must be confirmed by thin-layer chromatography (TLC) as well as by macroscopic and microscopic examinations (BHP, 1996; Wichtl and Bisset, 1994). The ESCOP monograph requires the material to comply with the British Herbal Pharmacopoeia (ESCOP, 1997).

Pharmacopeial grade dandelion root must be composed of the dried root and rhizome collected in the autumn when its inulin content is the highest. Histochemical detection of inulin is carried out. The root must contain not less than 40% water-soluble extractive with reference to the oven-dried material, among other quantitative standards. Botanical identity must be confirmed by TLC as well as by macroscopic and microscopic examinations (BHP, 1996; DAC, 1986; Karnick, 1994; Wichtl and Bisset, 1994). The Austrian Pharmacopoeia additionally requires a bitterness value of not less than 100 ( AB, 1981; Wichtl and Bisset, 1994). The ESCOP monograph requires the material to comply with both the Austrian Pharmacopoeia and the British Herbal Pharmacopoeia (ESCOP, 1997).


Dandelion root with herb consists of the entire plant Taraxacum officinale G. H. Weber ex Wiggers s.l. [Fam. Asteraceae], gathered while flowering, and its preparations in effective dosage. Ingredients include the bitter principles lactucopicrin (taraxacin), triterpenoids, and phytosterol.

Chemistry and Pharmacology

Dandelion root contains sesquiterpene lactones (eudesmanolides and germacranolides); triterpenes (b-amyrin, taraxol, and taraxerol); carbohydrates (inulin 2% in spring and up to 40% in autumn); carotenoids (lutein); fatty acids (myristic); flavonoids (apigenin and luteolin); minerals (potassium 1.8–4.5%); phenolic acids (caffeic acid and chlorogenic acid); phytosterols (sitosterol, stigmasterol, and taraxasterol); sugars (fructose approx. 18% in spring); vitamins (vitamin A up to 14,000 iu/100g); choline; mucilage (approx. 1.1%); and pectin (Bradley, 1992; Budavari, 1996; ESCOP, 1997; Leung and Foster, 1996; List and Hˆrhammer, 1979; Newall et al., 1996; Wichtl and Bisset, 1994).

The Commission E reported choleretic, diuretic, and appetite-stimulating activities. The British Herbal Compendium reported bitter, cholagogue, and mild laxative actions (Bradley, 1992). The British Herbal Pharmacopoeia reports its action as hepatic (BHP, 1996). The root contains sesquiterpene lactones beneficial to the digestion process and with a mild purgative effect (Bradley, 1992). Oral administration of dandelion extracts had a diuretic effect in rats and mice (Newall et al., 1996). Intravenous injection of fresh dandelion root decoction doubled the volume of bile secretion in dogs (ESCOP, 1997). The choleretic effect of dandelion root has been confirmed (Bradley, 1992).


The Commission E approved the internal use of dandelion root with herb for disturbances in bile flow, stimulation of diuresis, loss of appetite, and dyspepsia. The British Herbal Compendium indicates its use for hepato-biliary disorders, dyspepsia, lack of appetite, and rheumatic conditions (Bradley, 1992). ESCOP indicates its use for restoration of hepatic and biliary function, dyspepsia, and loss of appetite (ESCOP, 1997). The German Standard License for dandelion decoction indicates its use for biliary disorders, gastrointestinal complaints such as a feeling of distension and flatulence, digestive complaints, and to stimulate diuresis (Wichtl and Bisset, 1996).


Obstruction of bile ducts, gallbladder empyema, ileus. In case of gallstones, use only after consultation with a physician.

Side Effects

As with all drugs containing bitter substances, discomfort due to gastric hyperacidity may occur.

Use During Pregnancy and Lactation

No restrictions known.

Interactions with Other Drugs

None known.

Dosage and Administration

Unless otherwise prescribed: 3–4 g of cut or powdered root and herb three times daily.

[Ed. Note: The decoction instructions in the German Standard License monograph are as follows: Boil

1–2 teaspoonfuls (2.4–4.4 g) and strain after 15 minutes, twice daily in the morning and evening.]

[Ed. Note: The Commission E-recommended tincture dosage of 10–15 drops, three times daily, does not correlate closely with the Commission E daily dosage of 3–4 g dried root and herb. No justification can be found in the literature for such a low tincture dosage, in drops as opposed to milliliters. Most herbal references recommend 5–10 ml, three times daily, which relates to the Commission E daily dosage of 3–4 g dried root.]


Additional Resources


This material was adapted from The Complete German Commission E Monographs.

The dosage for equivalent preparations (tea infusion, fluidextract, and tincture) have been provided based on the following example:

Unless otherwise prescribed: 2 g per day of [powdered, crushed, cut or whole] [plant part]

The References and Additional Resources sections are new sections. Additional Resources are not cited in the monograph but are included for research purposes.

Taraxacum officinale Eclectic Monography


Taraxacum is known throughout the world and has a long history of use as both food and medicine. The botanical name Taraxacum is from the Greek, taraxos (disorder) and achos (remedy). The common name Dandelion, comes from the French, Dent-de-lion, or teeth of the lion, referring to the tooth-like edges of the leaves. KIng’s American Dispensatory reports its long use in the treatment of disorders of the liver and gallbladder, as well as its diuretic action useful in edema, and mild laxative action in constipation. Dandelion is high in potassium making it useful as a potassium sparing diuretic. Weiss notes its use as a cleansing spring tonic, nutritious and stimulating to the liver and kidneys. Weiss also reports the use of dandelion in the prevention and treatment of gallbladder disease. Modern research has confirmed Dandelion’s ability to enhance the flow of bile and its strong diuretic action. Description

Taraxacum is found worldwide, frequenting fields, gardens and yards. A perennial plant, it flowers from April to November. The dark green, hairless, toothed leaves have prominent veins and grow directly from the tap root, as does the hollow flower stalk. The flower is bright yellow. What appear to be petals are actually individual flowers, a characteristic of the compositae family that Dandelion is a member of. Each of the little flowers forms a seed with fluffy bristles allowing the seed to float in the wind to be scattered. The tap root is yellowish or brown and fleshy. The whole plant has a milky white juice and a bitter taste that becomes stronger with age. All parts of the plant are used.


* Sesquiterpene lactones

* Triterpenes and sterols including taroxol, taraxerol and B-sitosterol

* Phenolic acids including caffeic acid

* Flavonoids

* Polysaccharides including glucans, mannans and inulin

* Carotenoids (higher than carrots)- ~14000 IU per 100 grams

* Protein, Sugar, Pectin

* Choline

* Potassium- up to 5%


* Diuretic- leaf has stronger effect (1)

* Cholegogue (stimulates bile flow) (3)

* Laxative (2)

* Digestive bitter (2)

Conditions used for

* Edema, water retention (1)

* Constipation (2)

* Digestive disturbances including dyspepsia and loss of appetite (2,3)


* Liquid extract- 1-2 teaspoons three times a day

* Freeze-dried or dried- 300-450 mg three times a day

* Fresh plant juice- 1 tablespoon twice a day

Food Use

* Young dandelion leaves make an excellent spring green. When young and tender, they are delicious fresh in a salad. In fact, there are cultivated varieties of dandelion sold specifically as greens.

* Dandelion wine is made from the flowers allowed to ferment with sugar and yeast. An aperitif can be made with the flowers, sugar and vodka for a nice digestive stimulant.

* Dandelion root can be dried and roasted to be used as a coffee substitute.

Side Effects

* May cause loose stool in large doses.


* Peptic ulcer or gastritis

* Diarrhea

* Gallstones

* Acute inflammation of gastrointestinal tract or gallbladder

* Allergy to dandelion or related plants

* Psoriasis

Interactions with medications

* Do not use with other diuretics

* May interfere with the action of medications that are metabolized in the liver.

Use in pregnancy & lactation

* Safe for use in pregnancy and lactation


1. Racz-Kotilla E et al, The action of Taraxacum officinale extracts on body weight and diuresis of laboratory animals, Planta Med 1974; 26:212-17

2. Kuusi T et al, The bitterness properties of dandelion, Lebensm-Wiss Tachnol 1985;18:347-49

3. Buhm K, Choleretic action of some medicinal plants, Arzneim-Forsch Drug Res 1959;9:376-78

The Eclectic PhysicianMedicinal Herb Monographs A Journal of Alternative Medicine. May 7, 2004  

  Löwenzahn / Paardenbloem uit Tabernaemontanus 1625


Dess Röhrleinkrauts oder Löwenzahns haben wir drey Geschlecht/ under welchen doch nur die zwey erstgesetzten Geschlecht in der Artzeney gebrauchet werden    Das erste Geschlecht welches bey uns gemeiniglich Röhrleinskraut genannt wirdt/ hat ein weisse und schlechte Wurtzel mit wenig Zaseln/ der Wegwartwurtzel ähnlich/ aussgenommen dass diese Milch gibt/ und am Geschmack auch bitterer dann die Wegwart. Jm Anfang dess Frühlings erzeigen sich die Bletter/ die ligen auff der Erden gerings herumb aussgespreytet/ die seyndt zu beyden Seiten zerspalten unnd aussgeschnitten wie die Bletter der Wegwarten/ seyndt doch grösser/ linder unnd ein wenig haarechtig/ die Kerffen vergleichen sich den grössern Segenzähnen. Die Rippen so durch die Bletter gehen/ seyndt gegen die Wurtzel Purpurroht. Jn dem Aprillen stossen mitten auss dem Kraut von der Wurtzel herfür/ lange/ zarte/ runde/ glatte und braunlechtige Röhrlein/ die seyndt einer Spannen lang/ innwendig hol/ voller Milch/ Strohalmens dick. Auff den Gipffeln der Röhrlein wachsen grüne/ gebartete/ runde Knöpfflein/ darauss werden schöne/ gefüllte/ wolriechende Blumen/ gestalltet wie gemahlte schöne Sonnen/ die wehren oder bleiben nicht lang/ sondern werden haarechtige runde unnd wollechtige Köpfflein darauss/ die fliegen so baldt sie vom Lufft beweget werden/ darvon/ das ist der Samen dieses Gewächs/ als dann stehen die Röhrlein mit den weissen/ blossen/ runden Platten ledig/ wie die beschorne Monchsköpff oder Pfaffenblatten. Jm Meyen verwelcken die Röhrlein sampt jhren Nönchsblatten/ doch bleibet das Kraut/ wächset grösser/ unnd ist den gantzen Sommer biss in den Winter hineyn zu finden. Das gantze Gewächs wann es verwundet wirdt/ gibt es ein bittere Milch. Es wächset in den Grassgärten/ dessgleichen neben den Strassen an grassechtigen Rechen der Acker/ Weinberg/ und andern dergleichen Orten.

    ll. Das zweyt Geschlecht hat viel bollechtiger Wurtzeln/ die seynd den Affodillwurtzeln fast ähnlich/ aussgenommen dass sie kleiner seynd/ und schier gestalltet wie die Rettichschöttlein/ Die Blettlein seynd kleiner und nicht so tieff zerspalten/ ein wenig grauwblauw unnd haarechtig/ die ligen wie die vorigen auff der Erden aussgespreytet/ der wilden Wegwarten nicht fast ungleich/ alleyn dass sie breyter seynd. Sonst ist es mit den dünnen Röhrlein die es hat an statt der Stengel dem Röhrleinkraut nicht ungleich/ darauff wachsen im Brachmonat und Hewmonat schöne bleychgeele Blumen/ die seynd grösser dann die Eyerblumen/ die werden auch zu haarechtigen/ weissen Köpfflein/ und wann der Wind dahinder kompt/ so fliehen sie davon wie die Wollechtige Knöpfflein der Pfaffenröhrlein. Der Geschmack dieses Krauts ist bitter mit einer schärpffe/ dem Geschmack dess Pfaffenröhrleins gleich. Es wächst umb Mompelier/ dessgleichen in der Provintz Franckreich unnd in Languedock häuffig/ in den Wiesen und grassechtigen Orten/ unnd wird allein in unserm Teutschland in den Lustgärten gepflantzet.

    lll. Das dritte Geschlecht ist mit der Wurtzeln dem ersten Geschlecht der Wegwarten gleich/ die Bletter seynd lang/ zerschnitten/ der zamen Wegwarten ähnlich/ der Stengel wird Elen hoch unnd auch höher: mit vielen Nebenästlein oder zweiglein/ die Blumen seynd geel wie die Blummen dess Röhrleinkraut s/ die werden zu wollechtigen Köpfflein/ unnd fliehen darvon/ wie die Blumen aller obgemelter Geschlechter. Dieses Kraut wächst in den Wiesen und feuchten Grassechtigen Rechen unnd Gründen/ der Geschmack ist bitter wie der obgemelten.

Von den Namen der Löwenzähn unnd Röhrleinskreuter

    Das Röhrleinkraut oder Löwenzahn wird von PLINIO Lateinisch genannt APHAVA und HEDYPONIS. Von den Kreutlern/ APHACA THEOPHRASTI, zu dem underscheid APHACAE DIOSCORIDIS, welches ein ander Gewächs ist unnd mit diesem keine gemeinschafft nicht hat. Jtem/ SERIS VRINARIA, und auch VRINARIA, und HERBA VRINARIA, dieweil es treffentlich viel harnen machet/ SERIS SOMNIVERA, sintemal es ein sanfften Schlaff bringet/ CORONA MONARCHI, unnd CORONA FACERDOTIS, ROSTRUM PORCINUM, von ARNOLDO VILLANOUANO HERBA IMPERATORIS, und von andern DENS LEONIS, der Bletter halben die den spitzen Zähnen gleich seynd.Die gemeinen unerfahrnen Practicanten nennens fälschlich TARAXACON, oder ALTA TARAXACON, so doch diser Name der Wegwarten gebüret/ wie das auss SERAPIONE und AUICENNA in dem vergangenen Capitel von der Wegwarten erwiesen ist/ dann das DIOSCORIDES INTYBUM SYLVESTREM nennet/ dz ist bey den gemeldten Authoren/ TARAXACON oder ALTARAXACON.

    Hochteutsch/ Röhrleinkraut/ Pfaffenkraut/ Pfaffenblatt/ Säuwrüssel/ Säuwschnabel/ Säuwblum/ Pfaffenstiel/ Pfaffenröhrlein/ Hundsblum/ Pippauw/ Eyerblum/ Mönchsblatt/ Pastemen oder Postemenröhrlein/ Weglattich/ Wiesenlattich/ Hundslattich/ das ist LACTUCA CANINA, und Merzenblum. Jn Hessenland/ Sommerdorn/ von wegen der kleinen Stacheln unnd im Schweitzerland Wyenschwantz.

    Das zweyte Geschlecht/ wirdt heutiges Tages von den Kreutlern DENS LEONIS MOMPELIACA genannt/ nicht allein darumb dass es bey Mompelier und in der Provintz Franckreich wächset/ sondern auch dass es von den MEDICIS zu Mompelier vor den DENTEM LEONIS gebraucht wird. Von PETRO ANDREA MATTHIOLO wird es CICHORIUM CONSTANTINOPOLITANUM genannt/ sintemal es erstlich von Constantinopel in diese Landt kommen soll seyn: Andere nennen es CICHORIUM BIZANTINUM umb gemeldter Ursach willen/ unnd CICHORIUM BULBOSUM, Etliche aber CICHORIUM POLLYRHIZON, von wegen der vielen Wurtzeln/ wir nennens CICHORIUM ASPHODELINUM. Hochteutsch/ Constantinopolitanisch unnd Türckisch Wegwart/ das ist/ cICHORIUM TURCICUM.

    lll. Das dritte Geschlechtwird von etlichen under die geelen Wegwarten gerechnet/ hat keinen besondern Namen von den Kreutlern/ dann dass es DENS LEONIS lll genannt wird/ dabey wir es auch bleiben lassen.

Von der Natur/ Krafft/ Wirckung und Eygenschafft der Löwenzähnkreuter

    Es haben die Röhrleinkreuter ein Krafft und Eygenschafft zu külen/ und zu trucknen/ wie die Wegwarten/ doch trucknen sie etwas mehr von wegen jhrer Bitterkraut/ darmit sie die Wegwart ubertrifft/ sie reyniget und eröffnet darneben sonderlich aber unser gemein Pfaffenröhrlein/ und nach dem die Türckisch Wegwart/ wie solches dann auch heutiges Tages zu Mompelier vor den rechten Löwenzahn/ von den Gelehrten gebraucht wird/ unnd zum letzten das dritte Geschlecht/ geeler Wiesenlöwenzahn genannt.

Jnnerlicher Gebrauch dess Röhrleinkrauts

    Es wird das gemein Röhrleinkrautheutiges Tags auch in der Speiss unnd sonderlich zu den Saläten gebraucht/ darmit aber solches auch von wegen seiner bitterkeit/ zu der speiss anmütiger werde/ so pflegt mans weiss zu machen wie das Endivien und Wegwartenkraut/ dardurch es dann seine Bitterkeit verleuret. Solches mag nutzlich in allen oberzehlten Krankheiten wie von der Wegwart unnd der Endivien meldung geschehen ist in der Kost genützet werden/ sonderlich aber in den alten/ faulen Febern/ in dem grünen Siechtagen unnd der Wassersucht.

    Es wird von dem ARNOLDO sonderlich hoch gelobet wider dz Gegicht oder hinfallende Kranckheit/ derwegen sie nit allein in der Speiss/ sonder auch billich in den Artzneyen solle gebraucht werden/ sintemal die Erfahrung bezeuget/ dass sie in

    gemeltem fall heylsam ist/ auff alle manier genützet.

    Das Kraut und Wurtzel frisch zerschnitten und darnach in einem Mörsel gestossen/ den Safft aussgedruckt/ und desselbigen genommen sechszehen untzen/ und alten roten Rosenzucker vi.untzen/ solches uber einen linden glut zerlassen und ein wall oder drey auffsieden lassen/ darnach durchgesiegen/ ist ein heylsame Artzeney wider das Blutspeyhen/ so man Morgens unnd Abends/ jedesmal fünff oder sechs loth eynnimbt.

    Der geläuterte Safft von dem Kraut und Wurtzel/ ist ein gebenedeyte Artzeney wider die hitzige entrichtung und brunst dess Magens und der Leber/ eröffnet darneben die verstopffung derselben/ vertreibt die Geelsucht/ den grünen Siechtagen/ unnd verhütet die Wassersucht/ täglichen dess Morgens nüchtern vi.loth getruncken: dienet auch wider alle Feber/ unnd sonderlich wider das drittägig Feber.

    Wider das drittägig Feber/ mach folgenden Tranck: Nimb Röhrleinkraut/ mit der Wurtzel zwo Handvoll/ Cardenbenedictenkraut anderthalb Handvoll/ Genserichkraut eine Handvoll: Diese Kreuter nimb grün oder dürr/ zerschneide sie klein/ thue sie in ein bequeme Kannten/ schütt darüber ein Mass frisch Brunnenwasser/ thu darzu sechs loth guten Feinzucker/ verlutier die Kannten wol mit einem Rockenteyg/ setz sie in ein Kessel mit Wasser/ lasse darinn vier Stunden in einem stäten Sud sieden/ darnach seihe den Tranck ab durch ein Tuch/ unnd gib allen Morgen unnd Abend/ jedesmal vier Untzen darvon zu trincken.

    Oder nimb Röhrleinkraut und Wurtzel vier Handtvoll/ guten Feinzucker sechs loth/ zerschneide das Kraut klein/ thue es mit dem Zucker in ein Kannten/ schütte daruber ein mass gutes Cardenbenedictenwasser/ verlutier die Kannten/ unnd lasse solches vier Stunden sieden/ seihe es durch/ gib darvon allen Morgen und Abend drey untzen warm zu trincken/ es ist eine edle Artzney und besonders Experiment.

    Oder nimb frische Röhrleinkrautwurtzeln/ gereynigt unnd zerschnitten/ stosse die klein wie ein Muss in einem Steininen Mörsel/ darnach schütte zwo oder drey untzen Cardenbenedictenwasser daruber/ zerreibs/ seihe es durch ein Tuch drucks hart auss und gibs auff einmal zu trincken/ wann jhnen das Feber bald anstossen wil/ lass jhnen darauff nider liegen und warm zudecken und schwitzen. Das sol er etlichmal thun/ so wird er dess Febers bald ohne einige Gefahr loss werden: Dienet nicht allein wider das Tertian Feber/ sondern auch wider Quartan/ Quotidian und andere Feber so zu gewisser zeit den Menschen pflegen anzustossen.

    Röhrleinkraut mit Linsen gesotten und eyngenommen/ vertreibt den roten Leberfluss/ oder die rote Ruhr.

    Röhrleinkraut geläuterten Safft je uber den andern Tag fünff oder sechs loth getruncken/ dienet wider den Samenfluss. Das thut auch das Kraut unnd Wurtzel auff alle Manier/ in Speiss/ Tranck oder Artzeney gebraucht.

    Röhrleinkraut unnd Wurtzel in gutem Weinessig den drittentheil eyngesotten/ und die durchgesiegene Brühe Morgens und Abends/ jedesmal ein gemeinen Tischbecher voll warm getruncken/ vertreibet die Harnwind/ tröpfflingen harnen/ unnd bringet wider den verstandenen Harn.

    Wann ein Rossz unlustig ist/ und sein Futter nicht essen mag/ so schneide jhm frischRöhrleinkraut/ unnd gib es jhme under seinem Futter zu essen/ so wird es lustig und auch wol dardurch gereyniget. Lege jhm auch Röhrleinkraut in sein Wasser und lasse daruber trincken.

    Wann ein Rossz nicht stallen kan: So nimb Röhrleinkraut und Wurtzel vier guter Handtvoll/ schneide die klein/ und seuds in halb Wein und Essig dass es zusammen ein Mass seye/ zum halben theil ein/ seihe es durch ein Tuch und drucke das Kraut unnd Wurtzel hart auss/ schütte es dem Gaul durch ein Horn eyn.

    Es wird heutiges Tages das Röhrleinkraut auch höchlich gelobet allerhand Wunden zu heylen/ derowegen es auch von den rechtgeschaffenen Wundärtzten zu den Wundträncken gebraucht wird/ unnd ist aber nachfolgender Wundtranck zu allen gehauwenen unnd gestochenenWunden fast heylsam unnd erfahren/ den bereyte wie folget: Nimb Röhrleinkraut zwo Handvoll/ Benedictenkrautwurtzel anderthalb Handtvoll/ Ehrenpreyss/ Schadheyl/ Balsamöpffelkraut MOMORDICA genannt/ gülden Heylwurtzkraut/ jedes eine Handvoll/ Agrimonien/ rot Fingerhutkraut unnd Blumen/ Erdtbeerkraut/ Tausendtschönkraut/ Apostostemenkraut/ Schlüsselblumenkraut/ Sanct Peterskraut mit der Wurtzel/ jedes ein halbe Handvoll. Alle gemelte Stück soll man klein schneiden/ wol vermischen/ unnd in zwey gleiche Theil abwiegen/ darnach ein Theil in eine Kannten thun/ daruber schütten guten frischen Weins unnd frisch Brunnenwasser/ jedes ein halb Mass/ ferner auch darzu thunein Vierling Zucker/ folgens den Ranfft der Kannten wol verlutieren und die in einen Kessel mit siedendem Wasser vier Stunden lang in stäter hitz sieden lassen/ darnach lassen kalt werden/ und den Tranck durch ein sauber Tuch abseihen/ denselben wol vermacht in einem külen Ort verwahren. Von diesem Wundtranck soll man einem Verwundten allen Morgen unnd Abend/ jedesmal vier oder fünff Löffel voll warm zu trincken geben/ so wird er wunderbarliche hülff darvon spüren

Eusserlicher Gebrauch dess Röhrleinkrauts

    Wann man die dünnen Rörlein dess Pfaffenblats entzwey bricht/ gibt es ein weissen Milchsafft/ derselbig vertreibet die Flecken der Augen/ so man dess Tages zum wenigsten dreymal/ jedesmal ein par Tröpfflein desselbigen in die Augen thut/ und erkläret das dunckel Gesicht wunderbarlich.

    Etliche ziehen das Röhrleinkraut mit der Wurtzeln undersich auss/ schneiden darnach die Wurtzel ab/ hencken dieselbigen an den Halss/ tragen sie also ein zeitlang/ dass soll nicht allein die Flecken der Augen/ sondern auch das rinnen derselben vertreiben.

    Die andern graben die Wurtzeln auss ohn einige superstition oder Heydnisches Affenwerck/ schneiden die in neun stück unnd henckens neun Tag an den Halss/ das soll nicht allein die Flecken in gemelter Zeit verzehren/ sondern auch alle Gebrechen der Augen hinweg nemmen. Die dritten hencken die Wurtzel also gantz oder nur ein Stück darvon an Halss/ tragen die eine zeitlang/ und befinden gute besserung darvon/ wie ich dann solches selbst offtermals gesehen hab/ und ist nicht ohne dass Gott der Allmächtige die Gewächs/ Wurtzeln/ Kreuter/ Stein und andere dergleichen ding reichlich gesegnet unnd jhnen in erschaffung der Welt uund aller Creaturen/ wunderbarliche unnd heymliche verborgene Kräfft unnd Wirckung eyngegossen oder gegeben hat/ die ohn allen zweiffel unsern ersten Eltern vor dem sündlichen Fall nicht unbewust gewesen/ aber hernachmals durch den Fall wider verborgen worden seynd/ darvon wir etwann durch langwirige Erfahrung nur ein wenig Schattens erlanget haben/ dass wir bekennen müssen dass viel hheimlichkeit in der Natur verborgen/ die wir mit unseren Sinnen von wegen dess Falls unnd der Sünd nicht begreiffen mögen/ sonst würde so uns solche Ding vollkommentlicher bewust/ der Mensch schier unsterblich seyn: Aber der Teuffel der wie ein Aff alle ding Gott dem HERREN nach thun will/ der verkehret alle gute Mittel Gottes inn einen Aberglaubischen/ Heydnischen oder Jüdischen Missbrauch/ in dem er mit gewissen Ceremonien/ Geberden/ besonderer zeit unnd andern dergleichen Heydnischen unnd Teufflischen Fantaseyen die Menschen verführt und verblendet/ dass sie also auss den guten Mitteln Gottes einen Abgott machen/ und den Teuffelischen/ Aberglaubischen Fantaseyen unnd Ceremonien mehr Krafft unnd Wirckungen zuschreiben/ dan gott dem HERREN der alle Mittel gut geschaffen/ so fern wir dieselbig mit Dancksagung gebrauchen/ welches ein schreckliche Sünd unnd sie alle Christen bey verlust jhrer Seeligkeit/ meiden und fliehen sollen. Unnd soll sich derowegen niemand betriegen lassen/ dass offtermals solche Aberglaubische Mittel die Menschen helffen/ dann Gott der HERR solches auss gerechtem Urtheil von wegen unsers Unglaubens verhenget/ und dem Teuffel grossen gewalt unnd macht gibt uber die Kinder dess Unglaubens/ welches wir dann täglich erfahren/ dass solche zauberische Arzeneyen bey den Aberglaubischen Menschen viel vermögen/ unnd bissweilen dem Menschlichen Leib grosse Hülff thun/ darneben aber der Seelen tödlichen Schaden zufügen.

    Dargegen auch so ein rechter frommer Christ unnd Feind dess Aberglaubens solche unordenliche Mittel gebrauchet/ unnd sein Hoffnung unnd vertrauwen auff Gott den HERREN und nicht auff die Heydnische Aberglaubische Ceremonien unnd dess Teuffels betrieglich Gaucklerwerck setzet/ jhme gar unnd nimmer nichts helffen. Dass aber der Teuffel solche Besserung unnd Gesundheit dess Leibs bey den Kindern dess Unglaubens kräfftiglich wircket/ unnd nicht Gott der HERR/ haben wir tägliche Exempel/ deren wir nur eines erzehlen wöllen/ welches zu unserer Zeit sich zugetragen. Es ist ein Weib in der Stadt Rotweil gewesen/ die hat grosses Augenwehethumb ein lange Zeit gehabt/ viel rahts darzu gebraucht/ unnd nichts helffen wöllen/ ist jhr letztlich ein Pergmenter Zedel gegeben worden/ den soll sie an Halss hencken/ und ein zeitlang auff blosser Haut tragen/ so werde jhr sach sich zur besserung schicken unnd dess grossen schmertzens entlediget werden/ doch müsse sie einen guten glauben unnd vertrauwen haben dass der Zedel jhr helffen werde: Die Frauw hat den Zedel darauff angenommen unnd an Halss gehencket/ da hat sich jhre Augenkräncke täglichen gebessert/ also dass sie in kurtzer Zeit gar gesund geworden/ unnd jhr nichts gemangelt hat. Darauff hat sich nun zugetragen dz ein ander altes Weib gleichfalls mit grossem Augenschmertzen beladen worden/ Tag und Nacht ohne underlass keine ruhe können haben/ darzu nicht gesehen können/ unnd nach dem sie viel Mittel versucht unnd sie nichts helffen wöllen/ sondern der Schmertzen von Tag zu Tag mehr zugenommen/ und gar hat erblinden wöllen/ ist jhr angezeigt worden/ wie ein Weib zu Rotweil in der Statt were/ die auch unleidlich gross Augenwehe erlitten/ viel Mittel gebraucht/ aber es hette sie nichts helffen wöllen/ biss jhr endlich etwas were gegeben worden dass sie an Halss hencken sollte/ und eine zeitlang tragen/ so wird jhr geholffen werden/ dadurch sie dann in kurtzer zeit der Schmertzen verlassen/ und sie jhr Gesicht wider bekommen hette. Wie nun die gute Fraw dasselbig gehört/ hatte sie nicht underlassen können nachfragens zu haben und dieselbig Frauw zu jhr zu kommen freundlich bitten lassen/ welches jhr nicht abgeschlagen worden. Als nun das gemelte alte Weib zu deren kommen und jhren Mangel angehöret/ auch gebeten worden ist/ sie wölle jhr doch das jenig so sie angehencket ein zeitlang leihen/ sie wölle es jhr widerumb unversehret zustellen/ hat es jhr das ander Weib verwegert/ sprechend es seye jhr so lieb dass sie es nicht von sich gebe/ doch dieweil es nur ein Briefflein sey/ wölle sie es jhr vergönnen abschreiben zu lassen/ doch müsse es auff ein Jungfrauwen Pergament geschrieben werden/ darauff dz krancke Weib die verordnung gethan/ dass sie ein stücklein dess Pergaments zu wegen gebracht/ und nach einem armen Schüler geschickt/ jhme das Zedlein geben abzuschreiben und ein Pfennig oder vier zu schencken versprochen. Der Schüler hat das Zedeleingenommen darinn nichts anders dann selzame Character und unbekannte zauberische Wörter gestanden/ welche der Schüler nicht verstanden oder nachschreiben hat können/ unnd hette doch gerne die vier Pfennig verdienet/ nimpt also das Pergamen/ und schreibt darauff/ Der Teuffel stech dieser alten Frauwen die Augen auss und scheiss jhr in die Lucken/ wickelt das Zedelein zusammen und gibt’s der Frawen/ nimbt seinen versprochenen Lohn und zeucht darvon. Die gute Fraw nehet das Zedelein in ein Tüchlein/ hencket es mit gutem Glauben unnd vertrawen darauff an den Halss wie jhr befohlen war/ und trug es ein zeitlang/ da wurde der Frawen in kurtzer zeit mit vieler Menschen verwunderung geholffen/ also dass jedermann die gewisse Kunst begehret abzuschreiben/ und der Frawen gute verehrungen darfür zu geben verheissen worden/ da aber dieses Geheimnus offenbaret wurde/ begehret es niemand abzuschreiben/ hab derowegen hie an diesem Ort nit underlassen wöllen diese warhafftige HISTORIAM zu erzehlen/ darmit sich menniglich wisse vor solchen verbottenen/ Heydnischen/ Aberglaubischen und Teuffelischen Mitteln zu hüten/ dann es ist waren Christen viel besser und heylsamer/ dass sie kranck seyen und bleiben wo jnen nicht mit natürlichen Mitteln mag geholffen werden/ dann dass sie die Kranckheit mit verbottenen und derengleichen erzehlten aberglaubischen mitteln/ zu Gottes dess Herren schmach und schaden der Seelen vertreiben wollten/ welches auch kein rechtsinniger Christlicher MEDICUS nimmermehr thun wird/ unnd sollen billich alle frommen ehrliebende und Gottselige MEDICI jhnen die vermahnung MANTUANI an alle MEDICOS lassen angelegen seyn und dieselbige zu Gemüt führen/ die also lautet:MEDICUS NON CONSULAT EA, QUAE IN PERNICIEM VERGANT ANIMATUM. MELIUS EST ENIM NOS SEMPER AEGROTARE, QUAM CUM DIE CONTUMELIIS SANOS ESSE.

    Röhrleinkrautwurtzel am Halss auff blosser Haut getragen/ vertreibt das drittägig Feber.

    Röhrleinkraut frisch gestossen/ miltert das hitzig Zipperlein und die Gliedsucht/ wie ein Pflaster ubergelegt/ das thut auch der aussgeprest Safft/ leinine Tüchlein darinn genetzt/ und ubergelegt.

    Das grün Röhrleinkraut gestossen und pflasterrsweiss ubergelegt/ leschet die Hitz der schwartzen brennenden Blattern an den Beynen/ Brüsten/ Gemächten und andern orten dess Leibs.

    Oder mach nachfolgendes Sälblein zu den gemeldten Blattern: Nimb Röhrleinkraut das grün und frisch ist/ Rosenöle oder unzeitig Baumölen/ jedes xvi.untz. stoss das Kraut klein/ thue es in ein Kesselein/ schütte das Baumölen darüber/ lass sittiglich uber einer Glut sieden biss der Safft dess Krauts gar verzehret ist/ darnach drucks hart auss durch ein starckes unnd enges tuch/ zerlasse darinn vier untzen Wachs und iii.untz Hirtzenunschlit/ lass darnach kalt werden/ thue ferner dareyn viii.untzen gewäschenes Bleyweiss auss einem Rosenwasser/ ii.loth gewäschenes Silbergletsalles auff subtielest gepülvert/ unnd ii.Eyerweiss von frisch gelegten Eyern/ solches vermisch wol durcheinander mit einem hültzenen Stösser/ biss das Eyerweiss wol mit der Salben sich vereinbaret hat/ darnach behalts zum gebrauch. Diese Salb dienet nicht allein wider die obgemelde hitzige Blattern/ sondern auch zu allen hitzigen Geschwulsten und Entzündungen.

    Röhrleinkraut in Wasser/ Bier oder Wein gesotten/ unnd darmit die Wunden unnd Schäden gewäschen/ reyniget und säubert dieselben/ unnd fürdert sie treffentlich zu der heylung.

    Man macht auch auss dem Röhrleinkraut ein heylsames und edles gut Wundtpflaster/ das alle frische Wunden gewaltig heylet/ und keine Entzündung oder Wundtsucht darzu schlagen lasset/ das wirdt also gemacht: Man nimpt dess frischen Röhrleinkrauts xvi. Untz/ Bachbungen/ junge Weidenbletter/ Sanickel/ Ackeleybletter/ Gundelreb/ spitzen Wegerich/ spitz Wundtkraut/ Branntlattich/ Egelkraut/ jedes ii. Untz. Alle gemelte Kreuter sollen frisch unnd grün seyn/ die soll man zerschneiden und klein stossen/ darzu thun frischen Meybuttern/ Baumölen/ jedes xvi. Untz/ guten fürnen Wein xii. untz. darnach in einem bequemen Kesselein uber einer Glut lassen sittiglich sieden biss der Wein unnd alle Säfftigkeit der Kreuter verzehret ist/ als dann soll mans hart mit einer Pressen aussdrucken. Wann das geschehen soll man ferner darinn zergehen lassen/ Jungfrauwenwachs xii. Untzen/ Pinhartz/ Terpentin oder Lerchenhartz/ jedes acht Untz/ Hirtzenunschlitt vier Untz. Wann diese zergangen soll mans lassen kalt werden unnd allgemach rühren biss es kalt wirdt/ so hast du ein fürtrefflich und heylsames Wundtpflaster/ welches mit dem obgemeldten Wundtranck von dem Röhrleinkraut in heylung der Wunden nicht mag verbessert werden.

Röhrleinkraut oder Pfaffenblatt gedistilliert Wasser.


    Das Röhrleinkraut soll im Aprillen oder im anfang dess Meyens gedistilliert werden/ wann es in seiner vollkommenen Blüth ist/ als dann soll man Kraut und Blumen mit der Wurtzeln klein hacken/ und distillieren durch VESICAM, wie wir gelehrnet habendas Endivien und andere külende Wasser zu distillieren.

Jnnerlicher Gebrauch dess Röhrleinkrautwassers

    Röhrleinkrautwasser ist ein gute Artzeney wider das stechen in der Seiten eröffnet die Verstopffung der Leber vertreibet die Geelsucht/ dienet wider den grünen Siechtagen unnd die hitzige Wassersucht/ dessgleichen wider alle hitzige Feber/ Tertian/ Quartan/ und die Feber die von der Gallen kommen/ bringet ruhe/ machet schlaffen/ und treibet den Harn gewaltiglich/ reyniget die Nieren/ Harngäng unnd Blasen/ verbessert alle hitzige entrichtung/ aller innerlichen Glieder dess Eingeweyds/ dess Morgens und Abendts/ jedesmal v. oder sechs loth getruncken und den täglichen Tranck darmit gemischet: Jn summa dieses Wasser mag in aller massen unnd gestalt allein vor sich selbst/ oder mit Syrupen vermischt gebraucht werden/ wie das Wegwarten oder Endivienwasser.

    Etliche beytzen das Röhrleinkraut acht tage in gutem fürnenem Wein/ darnach distillieren sie es/ das gewinnt einen sauwrlechtigen Geschmack/ das gebrauchen sie wider den fallenden Siechtagen/ unnd gebens eyn wann diese Kranckheit den Menschen anfahen zu schütten/ und soll solchs ein bewehrt Experiment seyn.

Eusserlicher Gebrauch dess Röhrleinkrautwassers

    Das Röhrleinkrautwasser dienet wider das Hauptwehethumb von Hitzen/ leschet die Hitz unnd Brunst der Leber/ zweyfache leinine Tücher darinn genetzt/ und uber die Stirn/ Schläff unnd die Leber gelegt/ das zeucht die Hitz herauss unnd leget den Schmertzen/ so mans so offt es trucken wirdt/ wider erfrischet.

    Das Röhrleinkrautwasser dienet wider die hitzigen unnd roten Augen/ unnd vertreibet die Flecken darinnä/ jederweilen etliche Tröpfflein dareyn gethan. Zu solchem Gebrauch nemmen etliche die Blumen allein unnd distillieren die in BALNEO MARIAE.

    Röhrleinkrautwasser vertreibet die roten Bläterlein im Angesicht/ leschet die Hitz unnd kület dasselbige/ machet auch ein lauter Angesicht/ dasselbig offtermals darmit bestrichen unnd von jhm selber lassen trucken werden.

    Wider das hitzig Hauptwehethumb: Nimb Röhrleinkrautwasser sechs Untzen/ Chamillenwasser zwo Untzen/ Rosenessig anderhalb Untzen/ Ganffer zehen Gerstenkörner schwer/ temperier das durch einander/ netze zweyfache leinine Tücher darinn/ unnd lege die lauwlechtig uber die Stirn und beyde Schläff/ so offt sie auch trucken werden/ so erfrische sie wider es wirdt die Hitz gewaltig aussziehen/ und den schmertzen miltern.

    Wider die entzündung der Leber: Nimb Röhrleinkrautwasser viii. Untzen/ Endivienwasser vier untz/ Rosenessig ii. untzen/ Bleywess i. Untz. Vermische solches durcheinander/ netze ein zweyfach leinin Tuch dareyn/ unnd legs lawlechtig uber die Leber/ und erfrisch es offt.



    Auss dem Röhrleinkraut macht man ein herrlichen guten Wein/ darvon nimpt man allein die Wurtzel/ wäscht unnd reyniget die/ darnach lässet man sie trucken und dürr werden/ nimbt deren xxxii.Untzenstosset sie groblechtig/ macht sie darnach eyn mit häselen Spähnen in ein zwölff oder vierzehen mässiges Fässlein/ schläget dass Fässlein zu/ füllets mit einem guten Most/ lasset den darüber verjähren/ und verwahret den uber Jahr wie ein andern Kreuterwein. Dieser Wein eröffnet die Verstopffung der Leber/ vertreibet die Geelsucht/ den grünen Siechtagen unnd die Wassersucht/ er dienet wider die Harnwinde und tröpfflingen harnen/ ist ein heylsamer Tranck in den Tertian/ Quartan und den alten faulen Magenfebern/ die jhren ursprung von der Gallen unnd verstopffung der Leber haben.



    Der Syrup von dem Röhrleinkraut wird von dem Safft dess Krauts und der Wurtzeln also bereytet: Man nimbt dess aussgedruckten geläuterten Saffts drey Pfundt/ weissen Feinzucker ii.Pfundt. Vermischet solche unnd lassets in einem Kesselein uber einer linden Glut gemächlich zu einem Syrup sieden/ wie wir solches hiebevor von dem Wegwartensyrup gelehret haben.

    Dieser Syrup wirdt zu allen oben erzehlten innerlichen Kranckheiten heylsamlich gebrauchet/ unnd ist in allen dingen kräfftiger unnd stärcker als der Wegwarten oder Endivien Syrup.



    Das Saltz vom Röhrleinkraut soll künstlich wie das Wermuthsaltz aussgezogen/ und wie das Wegwartensaltz gebrauchet werden/ under anderem aber ist es fast dienlich wider die Wassersucht unnd den verhaltenen Harn/ allein oder aber mit andern Artzeneyen vermischt gebrauchet

Verdere literatuur over paardenbloem uit bibliotheek Godefridi