Pliny the Elder, Natural History

LCL 392: 202-203


Pliny: Natural History

pecudum milibus convenientibus ut thymo vescantur.


XXXII. Et conyzae duo genera in coronamentis, mas ac femina. differentia in folio: tenuius feminae et constrictius angustiusque, imbricatum maris.1 mas et ramosior. flos quoque magis splendet eius, serotinus utrique post arcturum. mas odore gravior, femina acutior, et ideo contra bestiarum morsus aptior. folia feminae mellis odorem habent, masculae radix a quibusdam libanotis appellatur, de qua diximus.


XXXIII. Etiamnum2 folio coronant Iovis flos, amaracum, hemerocalles, habrotonum, helenium, sisymbrium, serpullum, omnia surculosa rosae modo. colore tantum placet Iovis flos, odor abest, sicut et illi qui Graece phlox vocatur. et ramis autem et folio odorata sunt excepto serpullo. Helenium e lacrimis Helenae dicitur natum, et ideo in Helene insula laudatissimum. est autem frutex humi se spargens dodrantalibus ramulis, serpullo simili folio.


XXXIV. Habrotonum odore iucunde gravi floret aestate, aurei3 coloris. vacuum sponte provenit,


Book XXI

brought there from distant regions to browse upon the thyme.

XXXII. Of conyza also two kinds are used inConyza. chaplets, malea and female.b They differ in their leaves. That of the female is thinner, more compressed and narrower; the male, which is more branched, has a pantile-shaped leaf. Its blossom too is of a brighter colour; both blossom late, after Arcturus.c The scent of the male is heavier, of the female, sharper; for which reason the female is more suited to counteract the bites of beasts.d The leaves of the female have the smell of honey; the root of the male is called by some libanotis, about which I have already spoken.e

XXXIII. Chaplets are also made from the leaves of the flower of Jupiter, sweet marjoram, day-lily, southernwood, helenium, water-mint, wild thyme, all with woody stalks like those of the rose. The flower of Jupiter is pleasing only for its colour, as it has no scent; it is the same with the flower called in Greek phlox. Both the stalks however and the leaves of the plants just mentioned are fragrant, except those of wild thyme. Helenium is said to have sprung up from the tears of Helen, and therefore is very popular in the island of Helene. It is a shrub spreading over the ground with its nine-inch sprigs, the leaf being like wild thyme.

XXXIV. Southernwood, which blossoms in summer,Southernwood. has a flower of a pleasant but heavy scent and of a golden colour. Left alonef it grows of its own

DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.pliny_elder-natural_history.1938