Anise Aniseed

(Pimpinella anisum) It is not a popular flavouring in Britain, though apparently it was cooked as a potherb in England in the mid-16th century (Lloyd). Anisette is one of the cordial liqueurs made by mixing the oil from the seeds with spirits of wine, added to cold water on a hot day for a refreshing drink (Grieve. 1933). But it is also used in ouzo, raki, Pernod, etc., (Brouk), and, in South America, aguardiente (Swahn). Another use for the oil has been to cover up the bad taste of medicines (Swahn), but it is also said to be a good mice bait, if smeared in traps. It is poisonous to pigeons, and will destroy lice.

This is one of the herbs supposed to avert the evil eye (Grieve. 1931), and it was used in a Greek cure for impotence; ointments were made of the root of narcissus mixed with the seeds of nettle or anise (Simons). Gerard claimed, among other things, that "it helpeth the yeoxing or hicket, [hiccup, that is] both when it is drunken or eaten dry; the smell thereof doth also pre-vaile very much". It is best known as an indigestion remedy. The Romans offered an anise-flavoured cake at the end of rich meals to ease indigestion.

ANODYNE NECKLACES The name given in the 17th and 18th centuries to necklaces of PEONY roots or seeds, used as amulets. They were worn by children to prevent convulsions, or to help teething (Latham). Gerard also mentioned a necklace made from the roots, and "tied about the neckes of children" as an effective "remedy against the falling sicknesse". The use went further : it "heals such as are thought to be bewicht...". Langham, too, went beyond the falling sickness; he claimed that it protected against "the haunting of the fairies and goblins".

Antennaria dioica > CAT'S FOOT

Antennaria plantaginifolia > PLANTAIN-LEAVED EVERLASTING

Anthemis cotula > MAYDWEED

Anthoxanthum odoratum > SWEET VERNAL GRASS

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