Blackwell's Herbal - Dandelion and Red Poppy, Plates 1 and 2
Copyright © The British Library Board
The first plate
shows the dandelion, a common wild flower. Blackwell mentions
its ability to stimulate the flow of urine among its medicinal
uses. Recent research has confirmed this effect. The latex [the
milky substance found inside the whole plant] can be used to
treat warts, corns and verrucas. Blackwell describes the root
as 'about a finger thick and eight inches long full of a white
bitter milk'. The crushed and powdered root can be drunk as a
coffee substitute. Blackwell notes that the leaves are 'much
eat as a salad in the spring'.
The second plate shows the red poppy, also called the field or corn poppy,
a harmless relative of the opium poppy. 'The flowers', Blackwell writes,
'are cooling, incline to sleep, and much used in inflammatory fevers.'
The petals are the parts used in medical preparations. Blackwell lists
these as a syrup, a conserve of the flowers and a tincture.