American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. A perennial plant (Spigelia marilandica) native to the southeast United States having flowers with a tubular corolla that is red outside and yellow inside. The rhizomes and roots were once used as a vermifuge. Also called wormgrass.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. The root of the Carolina or Indian pink, Spigelia Marilandica, a well-known vermifuge officinal in the United States: in large doses narcotic-poisonous.
- n. The plant itself, an herb with showy flowers, red outside, yellow inside, common southward in the United States. Also called Maryland pinkroot and worm-grass. The name extends to the species S. Anthelmia of the West Indies and South America, there used as a similar remedy.
- n. A perennial North American herb (Spigelia marilandica), sometimes cultivated for its showy red blossoms.
- n. An annual South American and West Indian plant (Spigelia anthelmia).
- n. The root of Spigelia marilandica or Spigelia anthelmia, used as a powerful vermifuge.
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. (Med.) The root of Spigelia Marilandica, used as a powerful vermifuge; also, that of Spigelia Anthelmia. See definition 2 (below).
- n. A perennial North American herb (Spigelia Marilandica), sometimes cultivated for its showy red blossoms. Called also
Carolina pink, Maryland pinkroot, and worm grass.
- n. An annual South American and West Indian plant (Spigelia Anthelmia).
- n. a fungal disease of onions
- pink + root (Wiktionary)
“-- Boil half an ounce of pinkroot in half a pint of water, add to the water (after straining it) half a pound of sugar, boil it to a candy, pull the candy into sticks, cut them about four inches long, and let the child eat it from time to time, for”
“This plant is used by the Indians as an anthelmintic -- some say quite as efficient as the pinkroot.”
Resources of the Southern Fields and Forests, Medical, Economical, and Agricultural. Being also a Medical Botany of the Confederate States; with Practical Information on the Useful Properties of the Trees, Plants, and Shrubs
“Although the pinkroot is reported to have several remedial uses, presently herbal practitioners use the herb primarily to throw out worms, especially tapeworms and roundworms, from the intestines.”
“The pinkroot also holds a bitter and pungent substance that is soluble in water as well as alcohol, but not soluble in ether (an organic amalgam related to the hydrocarbon group).”
“Normally, the pinkroot is considered to be a protected and effective medicine provided it is administered in the right dosage and always pursued by a saline aperient like magnesium sulphate.”
“If taken in large doses, the pinkroot is said to produce narcotic effects that may cause enhanced heart action, giddiness, lightheadedness or vertigo, unclear or diffused vision, muscular spasms, convulsions and even prove to be fatal.”
“Constituents: The pinkroot herb encloses alkaloids (primarily spigeline),”
“Chemical analysis of the pinkroot has shown that it comprises proved medical elements like spigeline, lignin, tannin, albumin and myricin.”
“The other remedial properties of pinkroot consist of anti-bacterial, anti-diarrheic, antioxidant, anthelmintic and laxative.”
“It may be mentioned here that the effects of the venomous alkaloid spigeline present in pinkroot is similar to those of nicotine, coniine and lobeline.”
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