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Wild lettuce and remedies

There is a kind of wild lettuce, known by the Greeks as “cæsapon.” The leaves of this lettuce, applied as a liniment with polenta, are used for the cure of ulcerous sores. This plant is found growing in the fields. A third kind, again, grows in the woods; the name given to it is “isatis.” The leaves of this last, beaten up and applied with polenta, are very useful for the cure of wounds. A fourth kind is used by dyers of wool; in the leaves it would resemble wild lapa- thum, were it not that they are more numerous and darker. This lettuce has the property of stanching blood, and of healing phagedænic sores and putrid spreading ulcers, as well as tumours before suppuration. Both the root as well as the leaves are good, too, for erysipelas; and a decoction of it is drunk for affections of the spleen. Such are the properties peculiar to each of these varieties.


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