Water Avens

(Geum rivale) The roots are aromatic, slightly astringent, and once used to flavour ale, and to keep it from turning sour (Hulme). A decoction of the rootstock was a favourite beverage among the American Indians (Yanovsky), and it is still used, boiled in milk and sweetened, as a beverage not too different from chocolate (Sanford). The plant is actually called Chocolate-root (Sanford), or Indian Chocolate (Leighton). It has its medicinal uses, too, as an aromatic bitter, and the root was chewed to sweeten the breath (Fairweather). The Welsh text known as the Physicians of Myddfai had a remedy for hoarseness:

"Take the water avens, and St John's Wort, boil in pure milk. Mixing butter therewith when boiling. Boil a portion thereof briskly every morning and drink".

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