This section is from the book "An Experimental History Of The Materia Medica", by William Lewis.
Ligusticum feu Levisticum, Pharm. Edinb. Ligusticum vulgare C. B. Angelica montana pe-rennis paludapii folio Tourn. Ligusticum Levifsi-cum Linn. Lovage: a tall umbelliferous plant, with large leaves divided and subdivided into sections like those of smallage: the umbels stand on short pedicles, with several little leaves at the origin of each of the primary ones, and a few at the ramifications; the seeds are of a pale brown colour, oblong, plano-convex, marked with five longitudinal ridges: the root thick, fleshy, juicy, branched, of a dark brownish colour on the outside, and a whitish or pale yellowish within. It is a native of the southern parts of Europe, and raised with us in gardens: it is perennial, flowers in June, and ripens its seeds in August.
All the parts of this plant are of the aromatic kind; of a strong flavour, somewhat like that of angelica, but less agreeable; supposed particularly useful in female disorders. The leaves, which have been generally made choice of in this intention, have the most unpleasant smell, and suffer no great loss of it in keeping for some months; their taste is moderately warm, and acrid, and very durable in the mouth and throat. The root, whose smell is nearly of the same kind with that of the leaves, though more approaching to gratefulness, discovers to the taste a considerable sweetness joined to its mild aromatic warmth; an extract made from it by water retains little more than the sweet matter; the flavour exhaling in the inspiflation, and impregnating the distilled fluid, from which, if the quantity of the root Subjected to the operation be large, a small portion of essential oil separates: an extract made by rectified spirit retains the aromatic part as well as the sweet, and proves moderately warm, but much less so than the extract of angelica: towards the end of the infpiffation of the spirituous tincture, a thin unctuous matter appears upon the surface, in taste highly aromatic, and which seems to be the part that gives activity to the reft of the mass. The seeds of the plant have little of the sweetness of the roots, but are rather of more warmth and pungency, and of a more agreeable flavour.