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uM^^Z^f^J^ oy^P^

Vegetable Drugs



Professor of Botany and Pharmacognosy, Northwestern University School
of Pharmacy, Chicago.

Published by


315 Home Building,

Pittsburgh, Pa.


Copyright, 1902, by
Albert Schneider

All rights reserved.



Page 255, 5 lines from bottom, "Pernumbuco" should be

Page 257, last line, toiiteepice — Totite epice.
Page 260, 4 line top, langum — longum.
Page 261, middle of page, Populii — Popiilus.
Page 311, Urticeae — Urticaceae.
Page 317, rophides — raphides.

Fig. 129* {R.ubus villosus), instead of Fig. 129 now in positiorb



(In Part II. topics are arranged in alpliabetical order, hence no index
is required.)

Achromatopsy, 14.
Acid taste, 28, 32.
Acrid, 12.
Adulteration, 57.

accidental, 58.

criminal, 60.

detection of, 67.

material used, 63.

unintentional. 58.
Air chambers, 76.
Alcoholic drinks, 18.
Anise, 21.
Anodynes, 19.
Aromatic odors, 22.

taste, 12.
Artemisia, 106.

Bacteria, 40.
Bark, 8c.

mner, 81.

outer, 81.
Bast, 81.

Beetle, carrion, 19.
Bitter taste, 28, 32.
Botany, pharmaceutical, li.
Buzzards, 19.

Carbolic acid, 20.

Carbon bisulphide, 47.

Carrion beetle, 19.

Catarrh, 18.

Chloroform, 48.

Chlorphenol, 19.

Clay, 66.

Clearing fluid, 71.

CoUenchyma, 85.

Coloring substances, 67.

Color of powders, 55, 104.

Calor reactions, 72.

Colors, modifications of, 14, 15.

naming of, 14.

natural scale, 13.

prismatic. 13.

standards of, 13.

Common names, 105.
Cork, 83.
Crystals, 82.

Daltonism, 14.

Diamond dyes, 13.

Dirt, 66.

Drawings, 15.

Drugs, modification of, 38.

powdering of, 49, 51, 53.

selection of, 49.

tasteless, 36.
Ducts, 81.
Dyes, 13.

Endosperm, 80.
Epidermis, 7^.
Equipment, 70.
Exine, 77.

Fineness of powders, 52, 70.
Flowers, 77.
Fruits, 79.
Fungi, 42.

Garbling, 49.
Garlic, 18.
Glands, 81.
Gonidia, 45.
Gum camphor, 47.

Hair cells, 74.
Histology, II, 73.
Hyena, 19.
Hypoderm, 76.

Imago. 45._
Identification, 87.
Insects, 65.

Larvae, 45.

Laticiferous ducts, 84.
Lead, 57.

Leaves, "j},.
Lenticels, 8r.
Lichens, 44.
Light, 13.
Ligin reaction, 72.
Lime, 66.

Meals, 65.
Medullary rays. 82.
Methods, 70.
Microns, 103.
Mixing, powders, 52.

Names, common. 105.
Nebenzellen, "^T), 75-
Neighboring cells, Ti, 75.

•Odor, alliaceous, 25.
anise, 22.
ant, 25. _
aromatic, 22.
bean, 22.

bitter almond, 24.
bland, 24.
briny, 24.
camphor, 24.
cannabis, 25.
caraway, 24.
chamomile, 23.
chicory, 24.
cinnamon, 22.
clove, 23.
disagreeable, 25.
fenugreek, 23.
flower, 22,.
fragrant, 23.
garlic, 25.
hay, 24.
indifferent, 24.
intensity of, 18.
jalapa, 25.
mint, 23.
mouse, 25.
musk, 24.
nutmeg, 23.
pungent, 18.
quality of, 17, 18.
rancid, 25.
seaweed, 24.
smoky, 25.
soil, 24.
spicy, 22.
standards of, 17, 21.

sumbul, 24.

sulphurous, 25.

tannin, 25.

taraxacum, 26.

lea, 24.

valerian, 26.

veg. powders, 22.

wintergreen, 24.
Odorless drugs, 26, 27.
Olfactory apparatus, 17.
Onions, 18.
Ozcena, 18.

Palisade tissue, 76.
Pappus, 78.
Parasites, 39.

animal, 45.

vegetable, 40.
Parenchyma, 83.
Pebbles, 67.
Perfumes, 19.
' Pericarp, 80.
Petals, 78.
Petiole, "/•].
Pharmacopoeia, 103.
Phloroglucin, 72.
Pith, 85.
Pistil, 78.
Pollen, -JT.

Powdering drugs, 49, 50, 51, 53.
Powders, vegetable, 54.

characteristics, 54.

color of, II, 55, 104.

examination of, 70, 103.

fineness, 52, 53, 70.

keys to, 87, 95.

preservation of, 54.

study of, 87.
Prang, 14.

Prismatic colors, 13.
Ptyalin, 34.
Pungency, 31, 32.
Pungent odors, 18.

Quince, 20.
Quinine, 29, 32.

Reactions, color, "^2.
Rhizomes, 82.
Roots, 82.

Saffron, 13.
Salty taste, 28, 32.

Sand, 66.

Sapid substances, 29.
Sclerenchyma, 76, 78.
Seeds, 79.

Sensations, tactile, 16.
Sepals, 78.
Skunk, 19.
Sifting, 50.
Sophistication, 57.
Spicy odor, 22.
Spongy tissue, ^(i.
Stamens, ^^.
Standards of odor, 21.
Starches, 65.
Stems, 85.
Stomata, 75.
Stone cells, ^(i, 78.
Strychnin, 19.
Substitution, 61, 62.
Sunlight, 13.
Sweet taste, 28, 32.

Tactile sensations, 16.
Taste, 28.

acid, 28, 32.

acrid, 32.

agreeable, 31.

aromatic, 12, 29.

bitter, 28, 32.
cooling, 32.
gritty, 2,Z-
gummy, n.
mixed, 35.
mucilaginous, 32.
of drugs, 34.
puckery, 2,2.
pungent, 32.
refreshing, 32.
salty, 28, 31.
simple, 34.
standards, 28.
sticky, 33.
sweet, 28, 31.

Tasteless drugs, 36.
Testa, 79.
Tobacco, 18.
Touch, 16.
Trichomes, 74.

Vascular tissue, T], 84.
Vegetable powders, 70.
Vultures, 19.

Wine tasters, 18.
Woods, 85.


This work is primarily intended as a text-book for the use
of students in colleges of pharmacy. It will also be found very
useful by the practicing pharmacist in determining the identity
and purity of the vegetable powders, including spices, which come
under his direct supervision.

The work is timely, owing to the fact that the critical macro^
scopic and microscopic examination of powdered vegetable drugs
is being rapidly introduced in our leading colleges of pharmacy.
Such a study is highly important because vegetable powders will
undoubtedly soon receive official recognition in the United
States Pharmacopoeia. Furthermore, the practicing pharmacist
has as much or more to do with powdered vegetable drugs than
with crude vegetable drugs, and it is certainly his prime duty to
be competent to pass judgment upon them as to purity and iden-
tity. This can be done only by a careful microscopical examina-
tion of the powders, combined with the use of micro-chemical
reagents and chemical tests.

There are several very important German and French works
on powdered vegetable drugs, but none in the English language,
and it is hoped that with all its faults and imperfections this pres-
ent work may meet the demands of the progressive movements
in pharmacy and pharmaceutical education.

The drawings are all on the same uniform scale, made by the
aid of an Abbe camera lucida. An effort has been made to figure
the more important histological elements, leaving out those which
would be of no special diagnostic value. It must not be supposed,
however, that any attempt has been made to indicate in the figures
the relative abundance of the various elements. The scale of
measurements in microns is to be used with all the figures and is
only approximately correct ; considerable allowance must be made
for natural variation in size as well as form of cells and cell

Albert Schneider.

Chicago, i\Iarch, 1902.


Preface 3

Introduction 1 1


General Considerations.

General Suggestions on the Examination of Vegetable

I. Light and Standards of Color 13

II. Tactile Sensations 16

III. Odor and Odor Standards 17

IV. Taste and Standards of Taste 28


Causes Modifying the Characteristics of Powdered Vegetable


I. Normal Variations 38

II. Parasites 39

1. Vegetable Parasites 40

a. Bacteria 40

b. Hyphal Fungi 42

c. Lichens 44

2. Animal Parasites 45

Powdered Vegetable Drugs.


Powdering of Vegetable Drugs.

I. Selection of Crude Drugs for Powdering 49

II. Preparing for Powdering 49

III. Powdering 50

IV. Sifting 50

V. Fineness of Powders 52

VI. Preservation of Powders 54


Adulteration or Sophistication of Vegetable Drugs.

I. Adulteration as to Intent. 58

1. Unintentional or Accidental Adulteration 58

2. Intentional or Criminal Adulteration 60

II. Manner of Adulteration 61

1. Partial Substitution 61

2. Complete Substitution 62

III. Substances Employed in Sophistication 63

1. Organic Substances 63

a. Closely Related Species and Varieties ... 63

b. Remote Species and Varieties 63

c. Refuse and Winnowings 64

d. Exhausted Drugs 64

e. Inferior Drugs 64

/. Starches and Meals 65

g. Insects and Insect Remnants 65

2. Inorganic Substances 66

a. Sand 66

b. Dirt, Clay, Lime 66

c. Coloring Substances 67

IV. The Detection of Adulteration 6y

Contents. 7


The Microscopical Examination of Powdered Vegetable Drugs.

I. Equipment and Methods 70

II. Histology of Plant Organs 73

1. Leaves 73

2. Flowers yy

3. Fruits and Seeds 79

4. Barks 80

5. Stems 85

6. Woods 85

7. Other Plants and Plant Parts 86


Keys to the Identification of Powdered Vegetable Drugs.

I. Key based upon Macroscopical Characters 87

II. Key based upon Microscopical Characters 95


Special Descriptions of Vegetable Powders.

1. Absinthium. 10. Anthemis.

2. Achillea. 11, Apocynum and.

3. Aconite, leaf. 12. Apocynum can.

4. Aconite, root. 13. Areca, nut.

5. Althaea. 14. Arnica, fl.

6. Amygdala. 15, Arnica, plant.

7. Amylum. 16. Asarum.

8. Angustura. 17. Asclepias,

9. Anisum. 18. Aspidium.


Powdered Vegetable Drugs.

19. Aspidosperma.

20. Aurantium am.

21. Belladonna, leaf.

22. Belladonna, root.

23. Berberis.

24. Bryonia.

25. Buchu.

26. Cafifea.
2^. Calamus.

28. Calendula.

29. Calumba.

30. Canella.

31. Cannabis Indica.

32. Capsicum.

33. Carbo animalis.

34. Carbo ligni.

35. Cardamom.

36. Carthamus.

37. Carum.

38. Car}'ophyllus.

39. Cascarilla.

40. Castanea.

41. Caulophyllum.

42. Cetraria.

43. Chamselirium.

44. Chelidonium.

45. Chenopodium.

46. Chimaphila.

47. Chirata.

48. Cichorium.

49. Cimicifuga.

50. Cinchona.

51. Cinnamon, cassia.

52. Cinnamon, Ceylon.

53. Cinnamon, Saigon.

54. Cocculus.

55. Colchicum, corm.

56. Colchicum, seed.

57. Coca.

58. Colocynth.

59. Conium, fruit.

60. Convallaria.

61. Coriander.

62. Cornus.

63. Coto.

64. Crocus.

65. Cubeba.

66. Curcuma.

67. Cusso.

68. Cypripedium.

69. Delphinium.

70. Dextrin.

71. Digitalis.
'J2. Dulcamara.

73. Ergot.

74. Eriodictyon.

75. Eucalyptus.

76. Euonymus.
yy. Eupatorium.

78. Fceniculum.

79. Foenum Grsecum.

80. Frangula.

81. Galla, aleppo.

82. Galla, Chinese.

83. Gaultheria.

84. Gelsemium.

85. Gentian.

86. Geranium.

87. Glycyrrhiza.

121, ]\Iatico.

88. Gossypium.

122. Matricaria.

89. Granatum, root bark.

123. Menispermum.

90. Granatum, stem bark.

124. Mentha pip.

91. Grindelia.

125. Mentha vir.

92. Guaiacum, wood.

126. Methysticum,

93. Guarana.

127. Mezerium.

94. Hsematoxylon.

128. Myrica, bark.

95. Hamamelis.

129. Myristica.

96. Hedeoma.

130. Nux vomica.

97. Helleborus.

131. Paracoto.

98. Humulus.

132. Pareira.

99. Hydrangea.

133. Physostigma.

100. Hydrastis.

134. Phytolacca, fruit.

loi. Hyoscyamus, leaves.

135. Phytolacca, root.

102. Hyoscyamus, seeds.

136. Pilocarpus.

103. Ignatia.

137. Pimenta.

104. Illicium.

138. Piper, black.

105. Inula.

139. Piper, Avhite.

106. Ipecac.

140. Podophyllum.

107. Iris flor.

141. Populus.

108. Iris vers.

142. Prinos.

109. Jalapa.

143. Prunus Serotina.

no. Juglans.

144. Pulsatilla.

III. Kamala.

145. Pyrethrum, fl.

112. Krameria, Peruvian.

146. Pyrethrum, root.

113. Krameria, Savanilla.

147. Quassia.

114. Lappa.

148. Quercus.

115. Leptandra.

149. Ouillaia.

116. Linum.

150. Rhamnus Pursh.

117. Lobelia.

151. Rheum.

118, Lupulin.

152. Rhus glabra, bark

119. Lycopodium.

153. Rhus glabra, fruit.

120. Mace,

154. Rosa gallica.


Powdered Vegetable Drugs.

155. Rubus.

156. Rumex.

157. Sabadilla.

158. Sabina.

159. Salix.

160. Sambucus, fl.

161. Sanguinaria.

162. Santonica.

163. Sarsaparilla.

164. Sassafras, bark.

165. Scilla.

166. Scoparius.

167. Scopola, root.

168. Scutellaria.

169. Senega.

170. Senna.

171. Serpentaria.

172. Sinapis alba.

173. Sinapis nigra.

174. Spigelia.

175. Staphisagria.

176. Stillingia.

177. Stramonium, leaf.

178. Stramonium, seeds.

179. Strophanthus.

180. Sumbul.

181. Tabacum.

182. Taraxacum

183. Thea.

184. Theobroma.

185. Turnera, leaf.

186. Ulmus.

187. Uva ursi.

188. Valerian.

189. Vanilla.

190. Veratrum vir.

191. Viburnum op.

192. Viburnum prun.

193. Wintera.

194. Xanthoxylum.

195. Zingiber.

General Considerations. ii


General Considerations*

In establishing a comparatively new branch of science or
study, it is necessary to enter into the consideration of details
which become unnecessary and unimportant when the subject is
more fully understood. This applies to the study of powdered
vegetable drugs, and in Part I we shall treat of such details re-
lating to the study of vegetable powders as are essential to a better
comprehension of the subject.

Leading authorities in the study of vegetable powders have
encountered considerable difficulty in determining the color of the
individual powders. The grosser, more marked histological char-
acters of the majority of vegetable drugs, have been quite ac-
curately described by various investigators, but there is much
uncertainty and confusion regarding some, and these require more
careful investigation as to botanical origin, supplemented, of
course, by a careful histological study.

Pharmaceutical botany, as it applies to histology in particu-
lar, has not as yet become sufficiently developed and specialized.
In the histological study of vegetable drugs the chief attention is
to be given to cell-forms and cell-contents, as these are of prime
importance in the identification and critical comparison of vege-
table drugs, as will be more fully explained at the close of Part I.

Considerable difficulty was encountered in determining the
color of powdered vegetable drugs. No other characteristic is
more variable. The colors given apply to powders quite recently
prepared from good specimens of crude drugs. The student
must, however, constantly keep in mind the possible deviations

12 Powdered Vegetable Drugs.

from the color given, dependent upon differences in fineness, qual-
ity of drug used, possible substitution and adulteration, age of
powder and exposure to light and moisture.

It will be noted that such terms as "aromatic taste," "pun-
gently aromatic," and similar terms combining taste and odor,
have been omitted, as they are confusing and inaccurate. The
term "acrid" is dropped because it is syonymous with pungent,
and various authors have used it in a very loose and confusing

Examination of Vegetable Powders. 13


General Suggestions on the Examination of Vegetable Powders.

I. Light and Standards of Color.

The subject of the color of powdered drugs, as well as of
other substances, is still confused for several reasons. First, be-
cause there are no reliable standards of color, and second, because
of the variable naming of colors. The artificial color standards
used by teachers of the primary grades, artists, cloth manufac-
turers, furniture and house painters, etc., are very far from relia-
ble. No matter from what material the color is made, or how
carefully it is prepared, it is subject to variation in intensity and
quality. The most durable colors used by artisans at the present
time lose their factory gloss or tint in a very short time. Some
of the colors used by ancient mural painters and by Orientals of
the present time are more durable, but far from unchangeable.
It is practically impossible to print color scales which are uniform
throughout and which will not fade. It has been suggested that
certain substances having well recognized and comparatively per-
manent colors be used as standards of comparison, as the choco-
late brown of chocolate, the cinnamon brown of cassia cinnamon,
the saffron yellow of a standard solution of Spanish saffron, etc.
I have found solutions of the so-called Diamond dyes compara-
tively permanent, more so than the aniline dyes as ordinarily em-
ployed by biologists. Even these substances are subject to error
in preparation and are not sufficiently permanent to serve as relia-
ble standards. It would be possible to prepare a natural scale of
colors by projecting the prismatic colors of direct sunlight upon

14 Powdered Vegetable Drugs.

a uniform screen. It would be necessary to use prisms of imi-
form size and made of a uniform quality of glass. Any desired
tint or shade could be produced by interposing various shades
and tints of milk glass and smoked glass of standard thickness.
Even such a standard of colors is subject to some variation, leav-
ing out of consideration personal differences in visualizing power
and the power to discriminate between differences in color. Those
with defective eye-sight will have difficulty in recognizing many
tints and shades. Those who have inherited color blindness
(achromatopsy, Daltonism) fail to recognize certain colors

Perhaps the greatest obstacle to the recognition and com-
parison of colors is the confused naming of colors, or rather the
use of terms which can only be understood by those who are
familiar with the colors referred to. For instance such names as
purple, royal purple, scarlet, indigo, violet, crimson, magenta,
ecru, mauve, cerise, heliotrope, lavender, marine blue, terra cotta,
Pompeian red, canary red, Chinese yellow, etc., are wholly devoid
of meaning to the uninitiated. All the possible colors are simply
the recognizable tints and shades of the primary colors red, yellow
and blue, and the recognizable admixtures of these primary col-
ors. It would, therefore, be possible to select such color names
as would indicate the shade or tint of any primary color or admix-
ture of primary colors in such a manner as to be comprehended
by any one, and enable him to reproduce the color if desirable.
Such a system of color nomenclature has been proposed by Prang.
Prang worked upon this scheme for nearly half a centur\% and it
is doubtless the most complete system of its kind. It is extens-
ively used for teaching colors in schools, by artists and by manu-
facturers of colored fabrics of all kinds.

Prang's color scale is made from artificially prepared colors
printed upon paper, and is, therefore, not a reliable standard.
There are a multitude of conditions which modify the colors of
the plates. Variations in the mixing of the colors, differences in


the quality and thickness of the paper used, differences in the
force of the press, etc. Even should the thousands of copies come
quite uniform from the press, the colors will subsequently fade,
and the rate of fading will depend largely upon the amount of
handling and exposure to light. In spite of all these objections
the colors are fairly reliable as standards of comparison. Prang's
color nomenclature is simple, and can readily be understood and
applied by any one. It may be applied in giving the colors of the
powdered vegetable drugs.

It must also be borne in mind that form and texture greatly
modify the color. This is true of drugs as well as other sub-
stances. The same color on a rough and a smooth surface will
present a markedly different tone; the rough surface producing
a shade effect, hence the color will appear darker. In the case of
powdered drugs it will be noticed that fineness greatly modifies
the color, the finer powders producing tint effects as a rule. In
some instances a difference in fineness may even modify the qual-
ity of the color entirely (licorice root). Other conditions modify-
ing the color and form of drugs will be mentioned in Chapter II.

We need scarcely urge the necessity of good illumination in
the inspection of powders. The powder should be carefully com-
pared with the description given in the text-book. In nearly
every instance the student will find some slight deviations of the
color and consistency observed and that given in the book. The
author has endeavored to give the characteristics of the type or
representative specimens. The specimen studied may vary con-
siderably from the type description. An effort should, therefore,
be made to account for the differences, whether they are differ-
ences of color, odor, consistency or taste.

Whenever possible, the student should make careful draw-
ings of the microscopic structure of powder. The value of this
cannot be overestimated. In order to make a correct drawing
the student is compelled to study the powder carefully ; further-

l6 Powdered Vegetable Drugs.

more, the act of making the drawing, as well as the drawing itself,
will impress the structural characters more firmly upon the mind.

II. Tactile Sensations.

Touch, as it applies to the examination of drugs, is a tactile
sensation appreciated by the hand and fingers, the tongue and
mouth, rarely also the larynx. The touch of fingers and hands
conveys to the mind conceptions of coarseness or fineness, fatty,
oily or unctuous condition, crispness, of moisture, dryness, muci-
laginous condition, tendency to lumpiness, etc. In many in-
stances the sense of touch is merely an aid to the sense of sight —
that is, touch verifies or assists the visual judgment as to the
above properties.

The tactile sense of the fingers may be greatly increased in
delicacy by education and practice and by proper care. The most
sensitive parts of the fingers are the tips ; this sensitiveness is
greatly enhanced by cleanliness of hands and nails. The nails
should be carefully and evenly trimmed, but never very short, as
that reduces sensitiveness. The clean, trimmed, free portion of
the nail duplicates or magnifies the tactile sense by pressing upon
the opposing delicate dermis when the finger is brought in contact
with an object. Cold reduces sensitiveness very rapidly; wash-
ing in warm water restores the normal activity promptly.

An intelligent use of the tactile sense of fingers, combined
with the sense of sight, will aid the student in forming some esti-
mate of the identity of the powder.

It must also be remembered that moisture greatly modifies
the character of powders. For instance, a powder which appears
quite crisp when dry may become somewhat soft in moist weather,
indicating the presence of some bast or perhaps elongated paren-
chyma cells (many barks).

Tactile sensations usually designated as tastes and odors will
be explained later. We would advise students to depend largely

Examination of Vegetable Powders. 17

upon the tactile sense of the hand and fingers, though Hps, tongue
and mouth are more sensitive. Frequent and promiscuous tasting
and chewing of drugs is pernicious for several reasons.

III. Odor and Odor Standards.

The sense of smell is as yet imperfectly understood. Consid-
erable theoretical discussion has been entered into lately as re-
gards the chemistr}- of odor sensations. The olfactory apparatus
is undoubtedly the least reliable of all the sense organs. There is
no standard of odors, nor do we have any means of measuring
odors. A number of individuals may smell the same odor, but
they have no means of comparing either the quality or the quan-
tity of the odor. This being the case, it naturally follows that
there is no reliable odor nomenclature. Odors are variously clas-
sified as agreeable or pleasant, indifferent, strong, faint, fragrant
aromatic, heavy, acid, pungent, sweet, etc., words which are vari-
able in meaning and application.

An odor is said to be strong or faint according to individual
judgment. An odor may be "overpowering" to one person, while
another will pronounce it moderately strong, or give it no special

An odoriferous substance must be in a gaseous state and must
stimulate the special nerves of smell. The odoriferous gas or
vapor must enter the anterior nares in a large and continuous cur-
rent. If the nostrils are held shut, though the passages are filled
with the gas, no odor can be detected. Filling the nostrils with
liquids holding odoriferous gases in solution will not act upon the
olfactory nerves. It is also interesting to note that odors entering
the nostrils by way of the posterior nares cannot be smelled.

The olfactory nerves become fatigued very quickly, as is evi-
denced by the readiness with which one becomes "accustomed"
to an odor. Tenants of ill-ventilated rooms, in which the stench
is often overpowering, do not detect any bad odor. Those ad-

i8 Powdered Vegetable Drugs.

dieted to the use of tobacco are blissfully unconscious of the
strong odor which not only permeates the entire clothing, but
also the entire system and the atmosphere about them. Con-

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