Book sample of a large herb book

The book is titled: “Groot Handboek Geneeskrachtige Planten”, 6th press. It is written by Dr. Geert Verhelst.

@Czar I have made an extract for you of the black berry. (Ribes Nigrum L.). To comply with copyright law :face_with_peeking_eye: I have added a grain onto the whole pages below, so that they still show an overview as normally expected, but without the detail and readability. I have made two snippets of the pages, the first one I continuate slightly to the upper right corner of the first page cause I did want to include a historical quote (there are several of them on that page) The red squares give some indicative of where the sharp images where taken from and where they are situated on the page.

All in all, this states having over 200 monographs on herbs, but the extend and depth of them, not starting on the combinations between herbs, practices, combinatory recipes, and so forth… do not do the initial number of the book cover justice. It hosts a plenora of info on herbs, and I sometimes wished it also included trees, but sadly it does not… but plenty of other good stuff to be sure of! :smile: I hope this will help to get a better feeling of the content and scope of the book! :white_heart:

Regarding how the plant looks, quite a lot of pictures throughout the book with usually several large pictures in high resolution. There is a naming list with official and unofficial names in Latin, Dutch, English, French, and German are located in the upper left corner of the first image from the left; in case of the Black Berry there are nine Dutch names, eleven English names, three French names, four German names, and one latin name, for this plant. Below that the family name, a description of the origin, natural living environment of the plant. Followed up with the history of the plant of which I have included a snippet.

It follows up with information about the usable parts of the plant, and then in the yellow box, a whole chemical deduction of the plant composition, if doing anything with medieval alchemy and herbalism this section can be very helpful. Though each plant usually also comes with a combinatory section in which recipe combinations are explored and reasoned.

In the green table all kinds of properties of usage are explained. Each main category is in bold text, and each section where possible expanded upon; making it very useful for selectively finding herbs for potions. The index of the book of course has all these sorted out, so it can also be found there… In the gray section following the green section, some recipes and treatment plans are being expressed. Inbetween the gray and red section the combination possibilities, culinary applicatives, and minor mentions such as a quick mention on the economic value of this particular herb… It then follows up with a red section covering the toxic properties. People often assume a berry is non-toxic, but as can be seen in the generalized image, it is quite extensive, this is very helpful when dealing with plants unfamiliar, and also offers advise rarely found in other books… such as what storage methods cause toxic build up in the herb, and what medicines cannot be combined with the herb… In stating, the dearest writer knew his Kettle, it is multi-disciplinary in information given. I often compare this to the Half Blood Prince book in terms of spesifics, it is absolutely nuts!

Note that the amount of recipes on this page extract are somewhat limited, still. :grin: The boxes of these pages vary in length, dependable on the properties of the herb. In some cases the boxes cover one or two pages, and in others they are fairly small. The book itself is roughly comparable with be slightly wider than two A4 papers when opened, but I have not measured it.

Regarding the extracts: :innocent:

History, traditional usage

  • Used by monastics from the 12th century against all kinds of skin disorders
  • Traditionally, the bruised leaf was used in treating insect bites
  • The first description of medicinal properties was made by Peter Forestus
  • In folk medicine, black currant leaves gradually gained a good reputation in the treatment of urinary tract infections, kidney and bladder stones, chronic diarrhea, abdominal pain, and colic, arthritis, rheumatism, migraine, mouth and throat infections, colds…
  • The berry itself was not really appreciated for its “repulsive rather disgusting taste”, at least not by John Gerard (1545 - 1612)
    (… this continues for some time with several other mentions :stuck_out_tongue:)

Then a small snippet from the left side of the second red square on the general overfiew image below:

Processing forms and doses
Leave/gemma :

  • Gemma gylcerine macerate D1, adrenal stimulant, anti-allergic and anti-inflammatory: 2 times 50 drops per day; morning and afternoon or four times 20 drops per day
  • mother tincture, 3 times 30 drops per day
  • infusion, internal : diuretic and anti-rheumatic, external for wounds, bites and ulcers : 2 to 4 g (metric grams) or one to two teaspoons of crumbled leaf per cup of warm infusion or 30 to 50 g/2 handfuls of leaf per L of water, 5 to 10 steeps; or a handful of leaves and blossoms in 1 L of water : 1st cup sober, 2nd and 3rd cup before lunch and dinner
    (… this continues for a little bit with two more mentions followed up with the segments of the berries, berries and leaves, and oil sections in a similar fashion


:open_mouth: Very thorough - I need this!
Thank you for taking the time to write this very informative post! It sounds like it could really help me learn and potentially change how I work/think of herbs. I’ll look around some more and hopefully find a copy.

Thank you again- I really appreciate this post and your recommendation❣️!