NAT. ORD., Oleaceae.
COMMON NAME, European Ash.
PREPARATION.--The fresh leaves are pounded to a pulp and macerated with
two parts by weight of alcohol.
(In the Union Medicale, November, 1852, two French
physicians detailed several cases of gout and rheumatism
treated with Fraxinus excelsior, or ash leaves, one of
Rademacher's favorite remedies.
f the two physicians,
one of them, Dr. Peyraud, was himself relieved of the
gout by this treatment.)
Ash-leaves were highly recommended by Rademacher, and have been quite
extensively used in Germany on his suggestion. In the Union Medicale
for Nov. 27, 1852, two French physicians, Drs. Pouget and Peyraud,
detailed several cases of gout and rheumatism cured by an infusion of
ash-leaves in boiling water. Dr. Peyraud himself was one of those
"In 1842, Dr. Peyraud had his first attack of gout, which was severe,
and lasted for twenty-five days. During the three following years the
attacks increased in frequency and severity. Having derived little
benefit from the remedial means which he had resorted to, he listened to
the suggestion of one of his patients, an inhabitant of the department
of Dordogne, in France, who advised him to try an infusion of
ash-leaves, informing him, at the same time, that his forefathers had
been cured by this prescription, and that many of the country people got
rid of 'their pains' by employing it. Dr. Peyraud took the infusion of
ash-leaves and from 1845 to 1849 had no fit of gout. He then had an
attack, which yielded in five days to the infusion of ash-leaves, used
under the observation of Dr. Pouget. These circumstances recalled to the
recollection of Dr. Pouget a fact which he might otherwise never again
have considered. It was this: that when he was a physician at Soreze, in
1824, the peasants of that place had spoken to him of the great power
which an infusion of ash-leaves had in driving away pains. He afterwards
discovered that it had been used forty years ago as a gout-specific by
the peasants of Auvergne.
"A commercial traveller, who had been gouty for twenty years, and had
saturated himself with the syrup of Boubee and other vaunted specifics,
consulted Dr. Pouget. At this time he was an almost constant prisoner in
his room with successive attacks. After eleven days' use of the
infusion, he was able to walk two kilometres (one and a quarter English
miles); in fifteen days he resumed his journeys, and was able to travel
without suffering, by diligence, from Bordeaux to Quimper.
"Several other cases are detailed, some of them acute, and others
chronic. Articular rheumatism, in numerous instances, was also benefited
by the infusion of ash-leaves."