The Closet of Sir Kenelm Digby, Kt., Opened, by Kenelm Digby

Appendix I

Some Additional Receipts

1. Aqua Mirabilis. Sir Kenelm Digby’s way.

Take Cubebs, Gallingale, Cardamus, Mellilot-flowers, Cloves, Mace, Ginger, Cinammon, of each one dram bruised small, juyce of Celandine one pint, juyce of Spearmint half a pint, juyce of Balm half a pint, Sugar one pound, flower of Cowslips, Rosemary, Borage, Bugloss, Marigold, of each two drams, the best Sack three pints, strong Angelica-water one pint, red Rose-water half a pint; bruise the Spices & Flowers, & steep them in the Sack & juyces one night; the next morning distil it in an ordinary or glass-still, & first lay Harts-tongue leaves in the bottom of the still.

The Vertues of the Precedent Water

This water preserveth the Lungs without grievances, & helpeth them; being wounded, it suffereth the Blood not to putrifie, but multiplieth the same. This water suffereth not the heart to burn, nor melancholly, nor the Spleen to be lifted up above nature: it expelleth the Rheum, preserveth the Stomach, conserveth Youth, & procureth a good Colour: it preserveth Memory, it destroyeth the Palsie: If this be given to one a dying, a spoonful of it reviveth him; in the Summer use one spoonful a week fasting; in the Winter two spoonfuls.

The above receipt is given in the 3rd edition of The Closet Opened, 1677, also in The Queen’s Closet Opened.

2. Another more precious Cosmetick, or beautifying Water, by Sir Kenelm Digby.

Take White Lillies six drams, Florence Orrice Roots, Beans, Cicers, Lupins, of each half an ounce, fresh Bean-flowers a handful, Gum Tragant, White Lead, fine Sugar, of each half an ounce, Crums of white Bread, (steeped in Milk) an ounce, Frankincense, and Gum Arabick of each three drams, Borax, and feather’d Allom of each two drams, the White of an Egg, Camphire a dram and a half; infuse them four and twenty hours in a sufficient quantity of Rose and Bean-flower water, equal parts; then distil it in B.M.

This Water smooths, whitens, beautifies & preserves the Complexions of Ladies. They may wash their Faces with it at any time, but especially Morning and Evening.

3. Another richer Perfume; being pleasant and wholesome, to perfume Tobacco taken in a Pipe.

Take Balm of Peru half an ounce, seven or eight Drops of Oyl of Cinamon, Oyl of Cloves five drops, Oyl of Nutmegs, of Thyme, of Lavender, of Fennel, of Aniseeds (all drawn by distillation) of each a like quantity, or more or less as you like the Odour, and would have it strongest; incorporate with these half a dram of Ambergrease; make all these into a Paste; which keep in a Box; when you have fill’d your Pipe of Tobacco, put upon it about the bigness of a Pin’s Head of this Composition.

It will make the Smoak most pleasantly odoriferous, both to the Takers, and to them that come into the Room; and ones Breath will be sweet all the day after. It also comforts the Head and Brains. Approved by Sir Kenelm Digby.

From Hartman, The True Preserver of Health, 1682.

Last updated Sunday, March 27, 2016 at 11:53