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  • Usage note on spices. Another on galangal, and perfumer.

    "A spice merchant in Perugia who died in 1431 left a relatively modest stock of goods that included edible spices, such as pepper and ginger, but also dragon's blood (copy/paste this link:'s%20blood) aloe wood, mastic oil, and coral, which were primarily used as medicines (although dragon's blood was also used as a red dye, aloe wood was important in devising perfume, and mastic oil was probably used more for cosmetic than medical purposes). This merchant also dealt in 'myrobolans,' a type of small dried plum imported in several varieties from India and used as a laxative, to purge an excess of bile or phlegm, and to warm 'cold' stomachs."

    Paul Freedman, Out of the East: Spices and the Medieval Imagination (New Haven and London: Yale UP, 2008), 119. 

    October 9, 2017