[Sca-cooks] Limes

Johnna Holloway johnnae at mac.com
Sat Jul 12 13:56:13 PDT 2008

Since you asked--

emilio szabo wrote:
> << Michel de Nostredame or Nostradamus in 1555 did provide
> recipes for preserving limes in his confectionery work, so
> they seem to have been known and used in 16th century France.
> The recipe in the English translation is titled “How to preserve
> Limes and bitter oranges while they are small and still green…” It
> calls for ... >>
> Could you please comment on the translation of 16th century
> French "(petitz) limons" (1556 edition of Nostradamus)
> with "lime". Given the "confusion" in terminology, I'd be
> happy to learn more about this passage. 
What I was relying on in 2003 when I originally did the text was 
Boeser's translation The Elixirs of Nostradamus.

I just looked up "limon" in the Oxford Premium Reference Online and 
about half the time the word is defined
as lime and for the other half of the time it's defined as lemon! And it 
could be since Boesler was German he went with lime
because of his background in German. This translation is based on a 
German edition of Nostradamus translated into modern
German and then into English. Would the original German edition in the 
16th century have listed limes and not lemons or green lemons and oranges?

Who knows? (I did this recipe with limes and it does work with small 

I just looked at my facsimile of an edition from 1557 and it says 
/limons tendres/ and later /les lymons/ and later /les orenges, getons, 
& lymons/.

Not only are plant names hell, but so is the spelling.
> << /Healths Improvement/ which was written by Moffett in the
> 1590’s and published long after his death in 1655 does mention limes,
> so they were known in Elizabethan England." page 39. I just went back
> and checked Moffett and the passage on lemons and limes
> appears on pages 206 and 207.(image 110 on EEBO) and it is
> clear that he means limes as he mentions both with
> relation to the citrons that were mentioned previously. >>
> The title page says: "Written by that ever Famous Thomas Moffett ...".
> But it continues: "Corrected and Enlarged by Christopher Bennet,
> Docktor in Physick, ...". Can we be separate the Moffett parts
> from the Bennet parts?
As I understand it the text is Moffett's. Bennett saw it into print. I 
reread the preface just now and he doesn't say
that he improved it or added anything to Moffet's manuscript or words. 
The 1746 edition is now up on ECCO
so I will take a look at that.

Read the introduction in that and it doesn't say that Bennett expanded 
the original manuscript.

There is a note that seems to indicate that the original manuscript was 
then in existence as part of a Sloan collection,
so sometime I shall have to see if it's still around.

The UM is having problems with the Oxford DN Biographies, so I can't see 
what it says at the moment.
> << Later he writes *"The Lime * Apparently the first mention of the 
> lime in literature was made
> by Abd-Allatif in the thirteenth century. ... >>
> The article, Brighid brought to our attention, says:
> "The first reference known to us to the lime is that of
> Abu l-Khayr ... when referring to it as ... [lim] in some
> moment between the eleventh and twelfth centuries". (509)
I don't know. Could well be that they can date it back another century 
or two now.
> << I don't find that anyone actually referenced these examples from
> Das Kuchbuch der Sabina Welserin. ... 120 ... 69 >>
> The German words in the "Kochbuch" are "lemoin" (in 69) and "lemona" 
> (120).
> There are dozens of further quotations for "lemoni", "limoni" in the
> German corpus. The question remains: what kind of evidence is there 
> that these
> words refer to limes. (Apart from the Giessmann and Armstrong 
> translation)
> Plant names are hell ...
> E.
And if the translation for Das Kuchbuch der Sabina Welserin. that is online
needs to be corrected ???? I don't think the translator is around anymore.


ranvaig at columbus.rr.com wrote:
>> answered offlist since the topic has moved on
>> Johnnae
> Please do share onlist.  I havent had much to add, but am very interested in the subject.
> Ranvaig

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