This section is from the book "An Experimental History Of The Materia Medica", by William Lewis.
Atriplex foetida Ph. Edinb. & C. B. Chenopodium foetidum Tourn. Chenopodium Vul-varia Linn. Blitum foetidum vulvaria dictum Raii syn. Garosmum. Stinking orache or arach: a low, procumbent plant, sprinkled all over with a whitish clammy meal: the leaves are small, of a roundish figure, with an obtuse point: on the tops of the branches come forth clusters of imperfect flowers, followed each by a flattish seed. It is annual, grows wild about dunghills, and flowers in August.
* (a) Bergius asserts that he knew a lady who after eating asparagus generally made bloody urine. Mat. Med. p. 268.
This plant has a moderately strong smell, not a little offensive, somewhat akin to that of salt-fish, and which lasts long on the hands after touching the herb: it is sometimes met with among old rubbish; in which situation, its smell proves weaker than when produced in moister places, which it naturally delights in, and is also somewhat of a different kind: in either case, its taste is not very considerable. It gives a strong impregnation to water, both by infusion and distillation: the smell is extracted likewise by rectified spirit, and by this menstruum in some degree covered. In drying, the smell becomes weaker and of a less offensive kind: in keeping it is dissipated, but not soon.
Stinking arach, on account of its strong scent, is reckoned an useful antihysteric; in which intention some recommend a conserve of the leaves, others a watery infusion, and others a spirituous tincture of them. On some occasions, it may perhaps be preferable to the fetids which have been more commonly made use of; as not being accompanied with any pungency or irritation, and seeming to act merely by virtue of its odorous principle.