Caryophyllata vulgaris C. B. Geum urbanum Linn. Avens, or Herb-Benit: a roughish plant, with dark-coloured winged leaves, resembling those of agrimony; and pen-tapetalous yellow flowers, standing in ten-leaved cups on the tops of the branches, followed, each, by a round cluster of hairy seeds with hooked tails: the roots are slender, full of fibres, of a dark brownish colour on the outside, and reddish within. It is perennial, grows wild in woods and hedges, and is found in flower great-eft part of the summer.

(a) Neumann, De caryoph. aromat. Chem. works, p.413. Cartheufer, m. m. ii. 383.

The root of avens has been employed as a gentle styptic, corroborant, and stomachic; and for these intentions continues, not undeservedly, of some esteem in foreign countries, though very little regarded among us. It has a mildly austere somewhat aromatic taste; and a very pleasant smell, somewhat of the clove kind, especially in the spring, and when produced in dry warm foils: such as is the growth of close, shady, moist places, has little and often nothing of this flavour.

This root gives out its astringent matter equally to watery and spirituous menstrua, its aromatic part most perfectly to the latter: the aqueous infusion is of a reddish brown colour, the spirituous of a deep yellow. In distillation with water, it yields a small quantity of a whitish concrete oily matter, of a very grateful fragrance: the remaining decoction, infpiffated to the consistence of an extract, is moderately astringent. On committing to distillation the spirituous tincture, little or nothing comes over with the spirit; the aromatic part of the root, as well as the austere, remaining concentrated in the extract. The smell, which in the tincture is concealed or suppressed by the men-struum, discovers itself again when the spirit is drawn off.