So called from the country from whence it was brought. China radix, sankioa, quaquara, smilax aspera Chinensis, or China root. It is the smilax china, Lin. Sp. Pi. 1459.
It is an oblong, thick jointed root, full of irregular knobs, of a reddish brown colour outwardly, but inwardly of a pale red. There are two sorts, the East and the West Indian. The first is most esteemed; it is paler and harder than the other and in China is called lampatam.
The plant is climber, with tendrils; and, like the vine, it bears clusters of large berries of a red colour. It is a native of China and Japan.
The root hath but little smell or taste. An inspissated decoction of it yields an unctuous, farinaceous, almost insipid mass. It is supposed to promote perspiration and urine. Prosper Aipinus says, that the Egyptian women use this root to increase their bulk. It first appeared in Europe as an anti-venereal about the year 1535, but now it gives place to sarsuparilla.
This Last India china may be distinguished from the other by its yellow-brown colour outwardly; its white, or reddish-white, colour inwardly; by its being in flat-tish long pieces, full of knots, firm, and smooth when cut.
China occidentalis. China squria nodosa, smilax, pseudo china Lin. Sp. Pi. 146, smilax Indica spi-nosa. American or West Indian china.
This plant is a climber, ana bears black berries, grows wild in Virginia and Jamaica, and bears the cold of our climate. The root is brought chiefly from Jamaica in long round pieces, full of knots; whitish without, and reddish within.
In scrofulous disorders it has been preferred to the oriental kind. In other cases it is of similar but inferior virtue.
China supposita. Senecio Madraspatanus sene-cio,pseudo china Lin. Sp. Pi. 1216, or Bastard china. It grows in Malabar; the root greatly resembles the china root both in appearance and qualities. Lewis's Mat. Med. Raii Hist.
China chinae. See Cort. Per.