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Description. The roots of smallage are about a finger thick, wrinkled, and sinking deep in the earth, of a white colour, from which spring many winged leaves, somewhat resembling parsley, but are larger, of a yellower colour, each single leaf being somewhat three square: the stalks grow to be two or three feet high, smooth channelled, rather angular, and very much branched; at the division of the branches come forth umbels of small yellowish flowers, followed by seeds less than parsley-seed, paler and hotter. The whole plant is of a strong ungrateful flavour.

Place. It grows in marshy watery places.

Time. It flowers and ripens the seed in the summer months.

Government and virtues. Like carrots and carroway, it is under Mercury. The roots are diuretic, very good for the stoppage of urine, and the stone and gravel; they open obstructions of the liver and spleen; help the dropsy and jaundice; and remove female obstructions. The leaves are of the same nature, and are one of the herbs which are eaten in the spring, to sweeten and purify the blood, and help the scurvy: the seed is hot and carminative, and is one of the four lesser hot seeds, as the root is one of the five opening roots. The roots, leaves, and seed, are used.

The only officinal preparation taking its name from smallage, is the unguentum ex apio.

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