Hart's Tongue:
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Hart's Tongue

Hart's Tongue. Hind's Tongue, Buttonhole, Horse Tongue, God's-hair. Scolopcendrium vulgare; Asplenium scolopendrium (linn.) N.O. Filices

Part Used. Fronds

The Hart's Tongue, a fern of common growth in England in shady copses and on moist banks and walls, is the Lingua cervini of the old apothecaries, and its name refers to
the shape of its fronds.

Description. Its broad, long, undivided dark-green fronds distinguish it from all other native ferns, and render it a conspicuous object in the situations where it abounds, as it grows in masses. This fern is evergreen and easy of cultivation.

Medicinal Action and Uses. In common with Maidenhair, this fern was formerly considered one of the five great capillary herbs.

The older physicians esteemed it a very valuable medicine, and Galen gave it in infusion for diarrhœa and dysentery, for which its astringent quality made it a useful remedy. In country districts, especially in Wales and the Highlands, an ointment is made of its trends for burns and scalds and for piles. Culpepper tells us:

'...It is a good remedy for the liver, both to strengthen it when weak and ease it when afflicted... It is commended for hardness and stoppings of the spleen and liver, and the heat of the stomach. The distilled water is very good against the passion of the heart, to stay hiccough, to help the falling of the palate and to stay bleeding of the gums by gargling with it.