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Botany, Gardening, and Horticulture in the Special Collections and Archives Research Center

Rare Books

The Rare Book Collections in SCARC hold a number of herbals, which were guides to plants and their properties during the 15th-18th centuries. Later, the term was used by followers of the botanical medicine movement, and SCARC has multiple examples of this in the alternative nutrition subcollection of the History of Science Rare Book Collection. To find herbals in our collection, search keywords such as: herbal, materia medica, botan* or medicin* plant*.  The following is a partial  list of the herbals in our collections, which range from the mid-16th century to the modern day.


Livre Des Simples Medecines : Codex Bruxellensis IV. 1024 : A 15th-century French Herbal (facsimile). Antwerp: De Schutter, 1984. RS81 .L58 1984 

Dodoens, Rembert. Histoire Des Plantes : En Laquelle Est Contenue La Description Entiere Des Herbes, C'est À Dire, Leurs Especes, Forme, Noms, Temperament, Vertus & Operations: Non Seulement De Celles Qui Croissent En Ce Païs, Mais Aussi Des Autres Estrangeres Qui Viennent En Usage De Medecine. Anvers: De L'imprimerie De Iean Loë, 1557. QK41 .D6314 1557

Hill, Thomas, The Gardeners Labyrinth ... London: Printed ... by Henry Bynneman .., 1577. SB453.3.G7 H48 1577

Dodoens, Rembert. A Nievve Herball, or : Historie of Plantes : Wherein Is Contayned the Vvhole Discourse and Perfect Description of All Sortes of Herbes and Plantes, Their Diuers and Sundry Kindes, Their Straunge Figures, Fashions, and Shapes : Their Names, Natures, Operations, and Vertues, and That Not Onely of Those Whiche Are Here Growyng in This Our Countrie of Englande, but of All Others Also of Forrayne Realmes, Commonly Used in Physicke. London: G. Dewes, 1578. QK41 .D63

Gerard, John. The Herball, Or, General Historie of Plantes. Very Much Enlarged and Amended / by Thomas Johnson ... ed. London: Printed by Adam Islip, Joice Norton and Richard Whitakers, 1636. QK41 .G38

Parkinson, John. Theatrum Botanicvm = The Theater of Plants, Or, An Herball of Large Extent : Containing Therein a More Ample and Exact History and Declaration of the Physicall Herbs and Plants ... Distributed into Sundry Classes or Tribes, for the More Easie Knowledge of the Many Herbes of One Nature and Property ... London: Printed by Tho. Cotes, 1640. QK41 .P2

Salmon, William. Botanologia, the English Herbal : Or, History of Plants : Containing I. Their Names, Greek, Latine and English : II. Their Species, or Various Kinds : III. Their Descriptions : IV. Their Places of Growth : V. Their times of Flowering and Seeding : VI. Their Qualities or Properties : VII. Their Specifications : VIII. Their Preparations, Galenick and Chymick : IX Their Virtues and Uses : X.A Complete Florilegium, of All the Choice Flowers Cultivated by Our Florists, Interspersed through the Whole Work, in Their Proper Places : Where You Have Their Culture, Choice, Increase, and Way of Management, as Well for Profit as Delectation : Adorned with Exquisite Icons or Figures, of the Most Considerable Species, Representing to the Life, the True Forms of Those Several Plants : The Whole in an Alphabetical Order. London: Printed by L. Dawkes, for H. Rhodes ... and J. Taylor ..., 1710. QK41 .S17 1710

Thornton, Robert John. A New Family Herbal; Or, Popular Account of the Natures and Properties of the Various Plants Used in Medicine, Diet, and the Arts. London: Printed for R. Phillips [by R. Taylor], 1810. QK15 .T5

Hill, John. The Family Herbal : Or an Account of All Those English Plants, Which Are Remarkable for Their Virtues, and of the Drugs Which Are Produced by Vegetables of Other Countries, with Their Descriptions and Their Uses, as Proved by Experience ... Bungay: Printed and Published by C. Brightly and ... T. Kinnersley, 1812. QK99 .H5

Brown, O. Phelps. The Complete Herbalist, Or, The People Their Own Physicians by the Use of Nature's Remedies : Showing the Great Curative Properties of All Herbs, Gums, Balsams, Barks, Flowers, and Roots : How They Should Be Prepared, When and under What Influences Selected, at What times Gathered, and for What Diseases Administered : Also, Separate Treatises on Food and Drinks, Clothing, Exercise, the Regulation of the Passions, Life, Health, and Disease, Longevity, Medication, Air and Sunshine, Bathing, Sleep, Etc. : Also, Symptoms of Prevalent Diseases, Special Treatment in Special Cases, and a New and Plain System of Hygienic Principles. Jersey City, N.J.: Author, 1867. RV5 .B7 1867

Coon, Nelson. Using Plants for Healing; an American Herbal. Home and Garden Bookshelf. New York: Hearthside Press, 1963. QK99 .C6

Lucas, Richard. Nature's Medicines; the Folklore, Romance, and Values of Herbal Remedies. West Nyack, N.Y.: Parker, 1966. RS164 .L8

Archives and Manuscripts

The Ernst Thedore Stuhr Papers document Stuhr's research and writing on medicinal plants and the pharmacy profession. Stuhr served on the faculty of the Oregon State College School of Pharmacy from 1927 to 1944.