This section is from the book "Materia Medica And Therapeutics: An Introduction to the National Treatment of Disease", by John Mitchell Bruce. Also available from Amazon: The pharmacology and therapeutics of the materia medica.
The dried ripe fruit of Capsicum fastigiatum. Imported from Zanzibar, and distinguished in commerce as Guinea Pepper and Pod Pepper.
Characters.-Pod membranous, from five to eight lines long, two lines broad, straight, conical, pointed, smooth, shining, but somewhat corrugated, orange red, intensely hot in taste.
Composition.-The active principle of capsicum is still uncertain. Various bodies have been separated, and named capsicin, capsicol, etc.
Impurities.-Red lead and other coloured substances.
Dose.- 1/2 to 1 gr.
Tinctura Capsici.-1 in 27. Dose, 2 to 10 min.
Capsicum has a comparatively powerful local action, closely resembling that of volatile oils. It is used as a condiment (cayenne pepper); and medicinally in stimulant gargles, and as a stomachic, carminative, and stimulant, to dispel flatulence and rouse the appetite, especially in alcoholic subjects.