This section of the book is from "The Complete Herbalist" by Dr. O. Phelps Brown. Also available from Amazon: The Complete Herbalist: The People Their Own Physicians By The Use Of Nature's Remedies.
COMMON NAMES. Scrofula-weed, Adder's Violet, Rattle-snake Leaf, etc.
MEDICINAL PART. The leaves.
Description. -- The scape or stem of this plant is from eight to twelve inches high, springing from a perennial root. The leaves are radical, ovate, and dark green. The flowers are white, numerous, and pubescent.
History. -- This herb grows in varous parts of the United States, in rich woods and under evergreens, and is commoner southward than northward, although there is a variety (Goodyera Repens) which is plentiful in colder regions of America. It bears yellowish-white flowers in July and August. The leaves are the parts employed, and yield their virtues to boiling water.
Properties and Uses. -- It is anti-scrofulous, and is known to have cured severe cases of scrofula. The fresh leaves are steeped in milk and applied to scrofulous ulcers as a poultice, or the bruised leaves may be laid on them, and in either case they must be removed every three hours; at the same time an infusion must be taken as freely as the stomach will allow. It is also good as a wash in scrofulous ophthalmia. In my opinion scrofula is one of the most obstinate and many-shaped afflictions to which the human race is subjected, but in the production of this and other native and foreign plants, nature has shown her great charity and kindness towards us.