HERB - documenting herbs for treating epilepsy?

khkeeler kkeeler at unlinfo.unl.edu
Thu Apr 30 05:54:08 PDT 1998

Alisoun Ashling asked:
> >That said: can anyone on this list tell me of any herbal remedies used in the
> >past/present to treat epilepsy (identifying sources, etc.)? Thank you.

I immediately found a problem if the index was by plant to identify
which were epilepsy treatments -- so I drew a blank on Gerard's Herbal,
and Culpeper--because they are indexed by plants. Reading in those
herbals about likely plants might document it.

Using J.M. Riddle Dioscorides on pharmacy and medicine (UTexas Press,
1985--out of print and a good enough source to be worth asking UTP for
xeroxing permission)
Dioscorides (whose work was the most important herbal source throughout
Period) mentions black hellebore (Helleborus niger) for epilepsy and an
unidentified plant (variously identified as Cirsium and Carduus, so a
thistle).  It would take a bit of time to look up the actual words from
Dioscorides as to how to administer those.  Is that part of what you are
looking for?
   For epilepsy he also used ass's hooves, and spavins of horses.  And
selenite (an almost pure gypsum, calcium sulfate) was powdered and drunk
for epilepsy.  

kkeeler1 at unl.edu
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