Exhibit Home

Spoonful of Sugar: Medicinal Preparation in the Domestic Sphere

Meredith E. Torre, Guest Curator
December 1, 2006 - February 28, 2007
Harvesting the Mandrake
Peters, Hermann. Pictorial History of Ancient Pharmacy. 3rd ed.
Chicago: G. P. Englehard, 1902, c.1899.
Ebling Library call number RS 61 P48

Due to sinister legends and lore, some plants were harvested with ritualistic precautions. One such plant which received this deadly reputation was the Mandrake. It's physical characteristics were humanistic.

Harvested for hundreds of years prior to this drawing, the Mandrake reportedly screeched when pulled from the earth resulting in death to all those who heard it. The legend goes on to say dogs were used to extricate the plant, the plant would scream resulting in the death of the dog. The humans who took shelter away from the plant and drowned out the screaming remained unharmed, and then could harvest the plant safely.

Home page for Spoonful of Sugar

This online exhibit has been brought to you by Historical Services at the Ebling Library, University of Wisconsin Madison.

Copyright © 2001 - 2007
The Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System
Ebling Library
Health Sciences Learning Center
750 Highland Ave
Madison, WI  53705-2221
(608) 262-2020

Exhibit Home Male and Female Mandrake Harvesting the Mandrake Culpeper herbs Native American basket with flowers Queen kettle on fire cooking Brewing and Baking sign 5 books on shelf Four standing hearts Harry Potter and Mandrake horse with key