n Akroterion - Mandrake from antiquity to Harry Potter

Volume 53, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 0303-1896
  • E-ISSN: 2079-2883
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The main focus of this article is an examination of the most important ancient descriptions (200 BC to 650 AD) of the medical drug known as ''mandrake'' (). All the ancient sources on mandrake are briefly mentioned in the first paragraph. In the systemization of information which follows, the more detailed accounts of Dioscorides (Beck's 2005 translation of the is used throughout), Celsus and Pliny the Elder provide descriptions of the plant's physical appearance, the methods employed to harvest it, instructions on how to administer it, the dosages prescribed, the effects of overdosing, its toxicity and other (alleged or real) medicinal properties.

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