11 Oct 2017

THE DUCHESS OF NORTHUMBERLAND'S LITTLE BOOK OF POISONS, POTIONS AND APHRODISIACS.

I've always wanted to visit Alnwick Gardens (its castle famous for the Harry Potter films) and so was delighted when two of the loveliest people who we have the good fortune to call friends took me and Mr T on a surprise outing to, yes, you guessed ... Alnwick Gardens where, a few narrow escapes in the mobility scooter aside, we had a lovely day.


THE DUCHESS OF NORTHUMBERLAND'S LITTLE BOOK OF POISONS, POTIONS AND APHRODISIACS by JANE, DUCHESS OF NORTHUMBERLAND. 

INNER FRONT COVER BLURB: Combining the fascinating archive of the first Duchess of Northumberland with the expertise of Jane, the present duchess and the creator of the famous Poison Garden at Alnwick Castle, this gift book contains a collection of wonderful medicinal recipes passed down through generations. The reader will learn the secrets of the poisonous and curative properties of these plants and the more unusual varieties that have been cultivated and planted for centuries, and will discover how ‘to make teethe whyte’ and how ‘to make heare growe’.

FIRST SENTENCE {EDITH BEALE'S BOOK OF RECIPES, 1576}: 

FOR SLEEPE

Tske the powder of white hemlock seede, the weight of iijoz and drincke it with white wine and ye shall sleepe naturall.

MEMORABLE MOMENT {PAGE 88/89}: 

For A SWELLINGE IN THE LEGGES OR FEETE AND TO DRAWE OUT THE WATER HUMOUR

Take vine leaves when they be grene and laye them one by another ordilie where the swellinge is and role them with a role of linnen clothe about the swellinge legge or foote and within the space of 29 howers ye shall see the clothe as wette as it had bene put in water with the moisture of the humours and no skinne shall breake or perishe.

SOURCE: Purchased from the Alnwick Garden shop.

READ FOR: Not applicable.

MY THOUGHTS: From the beautiful cover (which is not done justice to here) to the old English that is used. From the pretty purple borders, to the accompanying graphics, this wonderful little book gives a delightfully interesting and indeed informative glimpse into the remedies, poisons, portions and aphrodisiacs (our friends joked that if Mr T came into work with a smile on his face they knew I'd been trying these) of yesteryear ... many of them not nearly as strange as you might think ... making it an perfect gift for those with an interest in British plants and the uses to which they were put.


11 comments:

Kelly said...

I think this sounds delightful. While I'm not necessarily well-versed on natural remedies, I do believe many of them are quite effective.

i hope you're up on your Old English if you're trying out any of these on Mr. T. :) One wrong word could make all the difference in the world!

Natasha said...

Oh this sounds so good! I love this kind of thing so will definitely have to seek out a copy as I love stuff like this, and the cover is gorgeous! Hope you're doing well Tracy, and thank you for the kind and supportive comments you left me while I was away! - Tasha

Melissa (Books and Things) said...

What an interesting book. I love finds like these.

Glad you had fun at the gardens! I so want to go!

Suko said...

I like the look and sound of this charming book!

Shooting Stars Mag said...

Oh, how fun - I'd love to see Alnwick castle.

sounds like a fun, informative read. Glad you liked it!

-Lauren
www.shootingstarsmag.net

Brian Joseph said...

This looks like a wonderful book to own. I am fascinated by Old English. I need to learn more about it and I should become more skilled in reading it.

nightwingsraven said...

Tracy,
This sounds like a very interesting
book and I will add it to my list
(and I am also with those who love
the truly beautiful cover).
I am glad that you and Mr. T. had
such a delightful day at Alnwick
Gardens (and the castle).
If I remember so correctly Alnwick
Castle was also featured in the
"Robin of Sherwood" series (which
is still one of my favourite series).
As well as that I had to think of
Anne Boleyn and her first love,
Harry Percy, who was the heir to
Northumberland. How different their
lives would have been if they had been
allowed to marry each other.
Raven

Melliane said...

It could be interesting

frayed at the edge said...

We have a visit to the Gardens on our must-see list!

Stephanie@Fairday's Blog said...

This cover looks beautiful! So glad the book was enjoyed as well. Sounds like a winner to me! :)

Also- how fantastic that you were able to go on such a fun and much anticipated outing. yay!

Gina R said...

ADORE the cover and it sounds like a great peek into a not-so-distant history. I definitely have a friend who would like this one. Passing on the rec. Thanks!