In the study of herbalism, I come across a number of terms that are both interesting and mystifying, since they’re not things we use in everyday conversation. I thought I’d share 13 with you – out of a list of quite a bit more than that! o.O… Never knew whatcha didn’t know, huh? Me neither.

So. Here we go:

1. Abortifacient: A drug or other agent that induces the expulsion of a fetus.

2. Alterative: An agent that produces gradual beneficial change in the body, usually by improving nutrition, without having any marked specific effect and without causing sensible evacuation.

3. Analgesic: A drug that relieves or diminishes pain.

4. Anaphrodesiac: An agent that reduces sexual desire or potency.

5. Anesthetic: An agent that deadens sensation.

6. Anthelmintic: An agent that destroys or expels intestinal worms; vermicide; vermifuge.

7. Anthocyanins: Any of a class of soluble glycoside pigments that are responsible for most of the blue to red colors in leaves, flowers, and other plant parts.

Bonus: Glycoside: Noun: A compound formed from a simple sugar and another compound by replacement of a hydroxyl group in the sugar molecule.

8. Antibiotic: An agent that destroys or arrest the growth of micro-organisms.

9. Anticoagulant: An agent that prevents clotting in a liquid, as in blood.

10. Antiemetic: An agent that counteracts nausea and relieves vomiting.

11. Antihydrotic: An agent that reduces or suppresses perspiration.

12. Antiperiodic: An agent that counteracts periodic or intermittent diseases (such as malaria).

13. Antipyretic: An agent that prevents or reduces fever.

Source: Jeanne Rose,The Medicinal Herbal, Aromatherapy and Herbal Studies Course, 2001, page 102

7 thoughts on “Thursday 13: Thirteen Herbalism Terms Defined

  1. angel says:

    Great Post. I’m totally into herbalism…so I knew a few of these. Well, most of them.

    Happy T13 and welcome back.

  2. Great list, Catherine! Like Angel said, I’ve always been interested in herbalism too. 🙂 Happy Thursday!

  3. What a cool list. Thank you for sharing.

  4. Maddy Barone says:

    I knew a few of those. Back when I was able to smell I was into aromatherapy. Missed you, babe. Take it easy.

  5. Xakara says:

    I must talk to a different set of people, because #5, #8 and #9 are actually every day conversation for me.

    And #3 should be familiar to everyone, as the over the counter pain relievers in every medicine cabinet are analgesics, (it says it right on the bottles).

    I’m familiar with #1 and #10 from writing, so I’m doing rather well. I might pick up an herbalism book yet. *grin*


    Happy T13,

    13 Wishes

  6. Ridi says:

    Beautiful blog!

  7. Deepankar says:

    its very useful information!
    continue your good job…

    By Deepankar
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