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Fagedenica grece ulcera que serpunt comedendo Dyascorides capitulo de dragontea.


Fagedenica AC | Fagedemia B | Fadegemia e | fagedenna f

dragontea AC ef | dracũtea B


In Greek Fagedenica ulcera {lit. "phagedaenic ulcers"} are ulcers which spread by eating {into the flesh}, as mentioned in Dyascorides’ chapter de dragontea {"On dragontea"}.


Latin phagedaenicus is the adjectival derivative of phagedaena, mainly used in connection with vulnera {"wounds"} and ulcera {"ulcers"} < Greek φαγεδαινικός /phagedainikós/ "spreading like a cancer, cancerous".

In Dioscorides Longobardus, 2, 152, ed. Stadler (1899), De dracontea, "phagedaenic ulcers/ wounds", fagedenica vulnera, are only mentioned in its section on the "virtues" of dracontea, saying that the herb: vulnera sordida et fagedenica cum brionia alba et melle posita purgat – "it cleans dirty and cancerous wounds laid on with white brionia {"bryony"} and honey." Vulnera fagedenica are altogether mentioned in five chapters in Dioscorides but a definition as quoted by Simon is nowhere given. Simon's definition could be seen as a resume of Cornelius Celsus' account, which he of course had seen, see above Facedena.

Botanical identification:

Dracontea, dragontea, dracontium is most often identified with some Arum-like species, e.g. Dracunculus vulgaris Schott "dragon arum, the voodoo lily [[1]], [[2]]", Arum maculatum L. "lords and ladies" [[3]], [[4]] and A. italicum L. "Italian arum" [[5]], [[6]]. All of them occur in the Mediterranean basin.

Wilf Gunther 11/11/13

See also: Facedena

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