This section is from the book "A Text Book Of Materia Medica, Being An Account Of The More Important Crude Drugs Of Vegetable And Animal Origin", by Henry G. Greenish. Also available from Amazon: A Text Book of Materia Medica : Being an Account of the More Important Crude Drugs of Vegetable and Animal Origin.
Butea seeds are the seeds of Butea frondosa, Roxburgh (N.O. Leguminosce), a tree indigenous to India.
The seeds are reniform in shape and very flat, from 25 to 38 mm. long, 16 to 25 mm. broad, and 1.5 to 2 mm. thick. Seed-coat dark reddish brown, thin, glossy, veined and wrinkled; hilum near the middle of the concave edge, conspicuous; cotyledons large, leafy and yellowish. They have a faint odour and slightly acrid and bitter taste.
Butea seeds contain fat (about 18 per cent.), proteids (about 19 per cent.), and sugar. No definite principle of therapeutic activity has been isolated.
They are used as an aperient and anthelmintic, and are said to act as a rubefacient when pounded with lemon juice and applied to the skin.