Insect Bites

September 10th, 2017

A teaspoonful of tincture of wild rosemary to a glass of water. Apply this lotion frequently to the inflamed parts.

Source: Civic League Cook Book

Sir Thomas Gower’s Metheglin for Health

September 8th, 2017

First boil the water and scum it; Then to 12 Gallons put 6 handfuls of Sweet-bryar-leaves, of Sweet-marjoram, Rosemary, Thyme, of each one a handful: Flowers of Marigold, Borrage, Bugloss, Sage, each two handfuls. Boil all together very gently, till a third waste. To eight Gallons of this put two Gallons of pure honey, and boil them till the Liquor bear an Egge, the breadth of threepence or a Groat, together with such spices as you like (bruised, but not beaten) an ounce of all is sufficient.

You must observe carefully. 1. Before you set the Liquor to boil, to cause a lusty Servant (his Arms well washed) to mix the honey and water together, labouring it with his hands at least an hour without intermission. 2. That when it begins to boil fast, you take away part of the fire, so as it may boil slowly, and the scum and dross go all to one side, the other remaining clear. When you take it off, let none of the liquor go away with the dross. 3. When you take it from the fire, let it settle well, before it be tunned into the vessel, wherein you mean to keep it: and when it comes near the bottom, let it be taken carefully from the sediment, with a thin Dish, so as nothing be put into the vessel, but what is clear. 4. Stop it very close (when it is set in the place, where it must remain) cover it with a cloth, upon which some handfuls of Bay-salt and Salpeter is laid, and over that lay clay, and a Turf. 5. Put into it, when you stop it, some New-laid-eggs in number proportionable to the bigness of the vessel, Shell’s unbroken. Six Eggs to about sixteen Gallons. The whole Egg-shell and all will be entirely consumed.

Source: The Closet Of Sir Kenelm Digby Knight Opened, K. Digby

Thieves’ Vinegar

July 22nd, 2017

Take a large handful of lavender blossoms, and the same quantity of sage, mint, rue, wormwood and rosemary. Chop and mix them well. Put them into a jar, with half an ounce of camphor that has been dissolved in a little alcohol, and pour in three quarts of strong clear vinegar. Keep the jar for two or three weeks in the hot sun, and at night plunge it into a box of heated sand. Afterwards strain and bottle the liquid, putting into each bottle a clove of garlic sliced. To have it very clear, after it has been bottled for a week, you should pour it off carefully from the sediment, and filter it through blotting paper. Then wash the bottles, and return the vinegar to them. It should be kept very tightly corked. It is used for sprinkling about in sick-rooms; and also in close damp oppressive weather. Inhaling the odour from a small bottle will frequently prevent faintness in a crowd.

It is best to make it in June.

This vinegar is so called from an old tradition, that during the prevalence of the plague in London the composition was invented by four thieves, who found it a preservative from contagion; and were by that means enabled to remain in the city and exercise their profession to great advantage, after most of the inhabitants had fled.

Source: Directions for Cookery, in its Various Branches, Eliza Leslie

To Preserve and Strengthen the Hair

November 30th, 2016

One ounce of bi-carbonate of soda, two drams of tincture of cantharides, two ounces of spirits of rosemary, and a half pint of rosewater. Mix the bi-carbonate of soda with the rosewater, and add the other ingredients. Apply it with a sponge, rubbing it well into the roots of the hair until a lather is produced; then rinse with water, and dry on a coarse towel.

Source: 76: A Cook Book

Preparation for Rough Skin

October 23rd, 2016

A delicate and effective preparation for rough skins, eruptive diseases, cuts or ulcers, is found in a mixture of one ounce of glycerine, half an ounce of rosemary-water, and twenty drops of carbolic acid. In those dreaded irritations of the skin, occurring in summer, such as hives or prickly heat, this wash gives soothing relief. A solution of this acid, say fifty drops to an ounce of the glycerine, applied at night, forms a protection from mosquitoes. Use the pure crystallized form: it is far less overpowering in its fragrance than the common sort, Those who dislike it too much to use at night, will find the sting of the bites almost miraculously cured, and the blotches removed by touching them with the mixture in the morning. Babies and children should be touched with it in a reduced form. Two or three drops of otter of roses in the preparation will improve the smell so as to render it tolerable to human beings though not so to mosquitoes.

Source: The Housekeeper’s Friend: A Practical Cookbook

An Indispensable Powder

September 3rd, 2016

A trouble scarcely to be named among refined persons is profuse perspiration, which ruins clothing and comfort alike. For this it is recommended to bathe frequently, putting into the water a cold infusion of rosemary, sage or thyme, and afterward dust the under-garments with a mixture of two and a half drachms of camphor, four ounces of orris-root, and sixteen ounces of starch, the whole reduced to impalpable powder. Tie it in a coarse muslin bag, (or one made of flannel is better if you wish to use it on the flesh,) and shake it over the clothes. This makes a very fine bathing powder.

Source: The Housekeeper’s Friend: A Practical Cookbook

Rosemary for the Hair

May 6th, 2016

Rosemary is considered an excellent remedy to increase the growth of the hair. Get a small quantity of the leaves and boil them over a quick fire for a few minutes, strain, add a little cocoanut oil and a few drops of verbena.

Source: Audel’s Household Helps, Hints and Receipts

The Snail water excellent for Consumptions

March 7th, 2016

Take a Peck of Snails with the Shells on their Backs, have in a readiness a good fire of Charcoal well kindled, make a hole in the midst of the fire, and cast your Snails into the fire, renew your fire till the Snails are well rosted, then rub them with a clean Cloth, till you have rubbed off all the green which will come off.

Then bruise them in a Mortar, shells and all, then take Clary, Celandine, Burrage, Scabious, Bugloss, five leav’d Grass, and if you find your self hot, put in some Wood-Sorrel, of every one of these one handful, with five tops of Angelica.

These Herbs being all bruised in a Mortar, put them in a sweet earthen Pot with five quarts of white Wine, and two quarts of Ale, steep them all night; then put them into an Alembeck, let the herbs be in the bottom of the Pot, and the Snails upon the Herbs, and upon the Snails put a Pint of Earth-worms slit and clean washed in white Wine, and put upon them four ounces of Anniseeds or Fennel-seeds well bruised, and five great handfuls of Rosemary Flowers well picked, two or three Races of Turmerick thin sliced, Harts-horn and Ivory, of each four ounces, well steeped in a quart of white Wine till it be like a Jelly, then draw it forth with care.

Source: The Queen-like Closet or Rich Cabinet, Hannah Wolley

Hair Restorer

December 28th, 2015

One ounce of tincture of cantharides, one ounce of spirits of rosemary, four ounces of olive oil. Well shake every time it is used, and rub a small quantity on the skin of the head every evening before going to bed, and in the morning, after the head has been well washed with cold water, and dried.

Source: Audel’s Household Helps, Hints and Receipts

Rosemary Tea for the Hair

December 12th, 2015

Bruise a branch of rosemary, pour one pint of boiling water over it, and use it warm every morning. This will do for several times.

Source: The Unrivalled Cook-Book and Housekeeper’s Guide, Mrs Washington