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Plantae; Spermatophyta, Angiospermae - Flowering Plants; Dicotyledonae; Rosiflorae / Rosidae; Euphorbiales; Euphorbiaceae - Spurge Family
First proved and introduced by Hale, New. Rem., 2nd ed. 1003; Allen: Encyclop. Mat. Med., Vol. IX, 169; Clarke: A Dictionary of Practical Mat. Med., Vol. III, 1269.
Description of the substance
A perennial herb, with an angled glabrous stem, growing to 4 feet high, with a milky sap. The leaves are sessile, leathery and tapering at the base. Flowers yellow on terminal spike. Fruit a three-grained capsule. The plant was named after Dr. B. Stillingfleet. It flowers from April to July; a milky juice exudes from the plant or root when cut or broken. This should be used when fresh as it deteriorates if kept. As found in commerce, the root is 1 to 4 inches long and 1 inch or more thick, covered with a bark wrinkled longitudinally, greyish brown externally, and reddish-brown or rose-coloured internally, odour peculiar, oleaginous, taste bitter and unpleasant, followed by a persistent pungent acridity in mouth and throat. Fracture fibrous, short, irregular, and shows a pithy soft, yellowish-pink interior porous woody portion. The inner bark and medullary rays with brown resin cells, its best solvent is alcohol.
---Constituents---Its resinous acrid constituent is Sylvacrol, an acrid fixed oil, volatile oil, tannin, starch, calcium oxalate. Woody fibre, colouring matter extractive.