This section is from the book "An Experimental History Of The Materia Medica", by William Lewis.
Coriandrum Pharm. Lond. & Edinb, Coriandrum majus C. B. Coriandrum sativum Linn. Coriander: an umbelliferous plant, with finely divided leaves; producing pale yellowish or brownish, striated, hemispherical seeds, which are joined, by the flat sides, two together. It is annual, a native of Italy, and cultivated in some parts of England.
The leaves of coriander have a strong smell, somewhat of the aromatic kind, but not a little disagreeable. The seeds also have, when fresh, a very unpleasant flavour, which by drying is altered and becomes tolerably grateful: their taste, in this dry state, is moderately warm and slightly pungent.
The dried seeds are sometimes employed as a stomachic and carminative, though less frequently than the other warm seeds. They give out their virtue totally to rectisied spirit, but only partially to water: the spirituous tincture is of a pale bright yellow colour, the watery in-fufion of a deeper brownish. In distillation with water, they yield a small quantity of a yellowish essential oil, which smells strongly and pretty agreeably of the coriander. Pure spirit likewise carries off, in evaporation or distillation, great part of their flavour; the spirituous extract proving, in taste as well as in smell, considerably weaker than the tincture uninfpiffated.