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Name. Called also Mew.

Description. The roots of common Spignel do spread much and deep in the ground, many strings or branches growing from one head, which is hairy at the top, of a blackish brown colour on the outside, and white within, from whence rise sundry long stalks of most fine cut leaves like hair, smaller than dill, set thick on both sides of the stalks, and of a good scent. Among these leaves rise up round stiff stalks, with a few joints and leaves on them, and at the tops an umbel of pure white flowers; at the edges whereof sometimes will be seen a shew of the reddish blueish colour, especially before they be full blown, and are succeeded by small, somewhat round seeds, bigger than the ordinary fennel, and of a brown colour, divided into two parts, and crusted on the back, as most of the umbelliferous seeds are.

Place. It grows wild in Lancashire, Yorkshire, and other northern counties, and is also planted in gardens.

Time. It flowers in June.

Government and virtues. It is an herb of Venus. Galen says, the roots of Spignel are available to provoke urine, and women's courses; but if too much thereof be taken, it causes head-ache. The roots boiled in wine or water, and drank, helps the stranguary and stoppings of the urine, the wind, swellings and pains in the stomach, pains of the mother, and all joint-aches. If the powder of the root be mixed with honey, and the same taken as a licking medicine, it breaks tough phlegm, and dries up the rheum that falls on the lungs. The roots are accounted very effectual against the stinging or biting of any venomous creature, and is one of the ingredients in Mithridate and other antidotes of the same.

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