A History of British Ferns

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Swan, Sonnenschein & Allen, 1854 - Ferns - 343 pages
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Page 284 - But this is to be reckoned among the old wives fables, and that also which Dioscorides telleth of, touching the gathering of Spleenewoort in the night, and other most vaine things, which are found here and there scattered in old books : from which most of the later writers do not abstaine, who many times fill up their pages with lies and frivolous toies, and by so doing do not a little deceive young students.
Page 32 - In many of the open mountainous parts of Wales, where it grows abundantly, the Brakes is cut down in the summer, and after being well dried, is burned by the cottagers in large heaps, for the sake of the alkali contained in the ashes : when sufficiently burned, enough...
Page 311 - ... scenery. So altered is the usual character of this fern, that its long fronds arch gracefully over, and dip their masses of seed in the crystal water ; while the saucy coots, from beneath the canopy it affords them, gaze fearlessly on the visitors who are continually passing by. One of the boatmen employed by Sir Walter Scott...
Page 319 - it is singular [ie sovereign] to heal green and fresh wounds. It hath been used among the alchymists and witches to do wonders withall, who say that it will loose locks and make them to fall from the feet of horses that grase where it doth grow, and hath been called of them Martagon, whereas in truth they are all but drowsy dreams and illusions ; but it is singular for wounds as aforesaid.
Page 33 - These balls are thoroughly dried, and carried about the neighbournood where they are made, for sale in the markets ; and they are also frequently kept by shopkeepers, to supply their customers. The price of these balls varies in different seasons, from 3d. to 8d. per dozen. They are very much prized by some housewives, for their utility in the wash-house, in economizing the use of soap. When about to be used they are put into the fire, and when heated to a red heat, are taken out and thrown into...
Page 330 - Which curious women use in many a nice disease ; For them that are with newts, or snakes, or adders stung, He seeketh out a herb that is called Adder's-tongue ; As Nature it ordain'd its own like hurt to cure, And sportive did herself to niceties inure.
Page 318 - The first leet night, quhan the new moon set, Quhan all was douffe and mirk, We saddled ouir naigis wi' the moon-fern leif, And rode fra Kilmerrin kirk. ' Some horses ware of the brume-cow framit, And some of the greine bay tree ; But mine was made of ane humloke schaw, And a stout stallion was he.
Page 32 - and left to rot upon the ground, it is a good improver of the land : * * it is an excellent manure for potatoes, and if buried beneath their roots, it never fails to produce a good crop: * * it makes a brisk fire for the purposes of brewing and baking. * * In many of the western isles [of Scotland], the people gain a very considerable profit by the sale of the ashes to soap and glass makers.
Page 202 - ... than from either the Abyssinian kousso, the Continental pomegranate, or American turpentine. It is surprising that Peschier's observations, made on a very large scale indeed, have attracted so little attention in Britain until the late notice in the Edinburgh Monthly Journal. I can only say this has not been for want of a strong recommendation on my own part, both in my Lectures constantly since 1833, and also in my • Dispensatory,' when first published in 1842.
Page 311 - Oxmiinda regalia completely fringes the banks of the river between the lakes, and forms a prominent feature in this most lovely scenery. So altered is the usual character of this fern, that its long fronds arch gracefully over, and dip their masses of seed in the crystal water ; while the saucy coots, from beneath the canopy it affords them, gaze fearlessly on the visitors who are continually passing by.

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