i.e., LESSER SPEARWORT (Ranunculus flammula), and GREATER SPEARWORT (Ranunculus lingua) The plant was used medicinally for blistering, especially in the Highlands and Hebrides (Grigson. 1955). Martin (1703) has this description of its uise for sciatica: "Flammula Jovis, or Spire-wort, being cut small, and a limpet shell filled with it, and applied to the thighbone, causes a blister to arise about the bigness of an egg; which being cut, a quantity of watery matter issues from it: the blister rises three times, and being emptied as often, the cure is performed ...". Of course it will raise a blister - all the buttercups will. But a Somerset entry records the use of the juice to raise a blister on the hands deliberately, and apparently ponies were treated this way for some unspecified ailment (Tongue. 1965). Lindley knew the distilled water as an emetic, but apparently it did not need this sophistication - a little of the infusion was drunk in Skye in melted fresh butter for an efficient purge (Martin).
"The common cure for farcy in horses was sparrow-weed (i.e., GREATER SPEARWORT) stewed with garlic" (Ireland) (Foster). It was sometimes used for swine fever there, too (Moloney).
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