Account of 'Historia Plantarum Species...' by J Ray

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                                Chrysanthemum’s, and Marigolds, the Yarrows, the Daisies, Fever-few, the Lavender-cottons, 
the Tansies, the Wormwoods, the Southernwoods, Mugworts, Scabioses, Teasels, Eringo, the Globe Thistles etc.
Lib. 9th treats of the umbelliferous Herbs, to which are premised some herbs that are a 
little akin to the umbells, only they have a single seed succeeding each flower, whereas the true umbells 
have two; of the first kind are many valerians, the sea Lavenders, the Marvell of Peru, Agrimony, 
Burnet, Meadow-Rue, fumitory etc. the genuine umbells have pentapetalous flowers to each of which 
succeed two naked seeds joined together, these are put under many subdivisions according to the vari 
ous figures of their seeds and leaves; of this umbelliferous family are the Parsneps, the Fennells, 
the Angelica’s, the Cummin, Parsleys, Hemlocks, Smallage, Aniseed, Caraways, the Carrots, Coriander etc.
all which are very nicely distinguished, and variously subdivided.
The 10th contains the stellate herbs, whose leaves like a radiated star embraces 
the stalk; their flowers are monopetalous, tho divided or cut into 4 segments, or could coloured 
leaves; to each flower there generally succeeds two seeds, of this kind are the Madders, the Crosworts,
the Ladies Bedstraw, the Woodroofs, the cleavers or goose grass etc. The second section of this book 
comprehends the Asperifolious herbs whose flowers are monopetalous, and generally reflected at 
the end like a scorpions taile, yet cut into five margines, or segments; to every one of these flowers 
succeed for the most part 4 seeds. of this kind are the pulmoria maculosa or Sage of Jerusalem, 
the Hounds-tongues, Borage, Bugloss, Alkanet, the Heliotropes or Turnsoles, the Gromills, Scorpion-
grass, Comfrey, the Honey-worts etc.
The 11th is of the verticillate herbs, so called from the flowers embracing the stalk
like a whirl, or wherle, the leaves are generally placed two together exactly opposite on the 
stalk. the flowers are monopetalous, labiated for the most part or galeated. to each flower suc 
ceeds 4 seeds, which the calyx or perianthium serves in stead of a vessell; these are subdivided 
according to their substance and duration, as they are ligneous, fruticose, perennial, and 
Herbaceous. of this tribe are the Sages, the Lavenders, Rosemary, the Hyssops, the Savoury’s, Thymes,
Poley Mountain, the Germanders, the Mints, Penny royalls, Vervain, the Majorams, Basil, the Clary’s, Betony’s,
Marrubiums, Lamium’s, Sideritis, Ground Ivy, Baulm, Calamint, ground pine, Bugle etc
The 12th comprehends those herbs, to each of whose flowers succeed more then 
4 naked seeds, whose number is indefinite, they being polyspermous; here wee may note that Mr 
Ray takes those for naked seeds, whose follicules or covers (if they seem to have any) are not 
cast of, but fall with the seeds from the mother plant, being not separable from them. of this 
family are the Hepatica’s, the Ranunculi, the lesser Celandine, some Mallows, and Althaea’s, Avens,
Strawberries, Cinquefoils, Tormentill, etc. the second section of this book is of such herbs as have 
many naked seeds, and a flower without any perianthium or calyx, as the Travellers joy and 
some Climbers, Dropwort, Meadow sweet, the Anemonies, Pasque-flowers; those of the former section 
having perianthia, or cups about their flowers 
The 13th is of the pomiferous, and bacciferous herbs, these are distinguished by the 
magnitudes, and skins of their fruits; the flowers are naked, monopetalous, divided into five margi 
nes or segments, placed on the top of the fruit like a Corolla or umbilicus. of this kind are the 
Gourds, the Pumpions, the Cologuintida, the Citruss, Melons, Cucumbers, the Passion flowers, etc. China,
Bryony, Solomon’s Seals, Solanum’s or nightshades, Mandrakas, Capsicum’s or Guinny pepper, Sparagus,
Lillies of the valleys etc.
Luv. 14th contains the multisiliquose or corniculated Herbs, which 
after each flower bear many pods, or horned seed vessells; of this kind are some sedums, or 
houseleeks, Orpines, Peionys, black Hellebore, some Althaea’s, Monks hoods, Columbines, Larks spur’s.
The 15th is of such herbs as have a uniform monopetalous flower, and besides 
the calyx of the flower have a distinct and proper seed vessell, such are the Hen banes, the To 
bacco’s, the Gentians, the Convolvuli or bindweeds, the Bell flowers, throatworts, Rampions, Sha 
monium’s or thorn Apples; the other section is of the defform’d monopetalous herbs, both of which 
are subdivided according to the figures and values of the seminal vessells, of this last kind are 
the Butterwortsr, the Toad flax or Linariae, Birthworts, Figworts, Fox gloves, Cocks-combs 
or Rattles, eyebrights, Cow-wheats etc.

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Account of 'Historia Plantarum Species...' by J Ray, 1686. From The Royal Society, CLP/22i/26



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