Of Nuce. chap. 108.
THe Nut trée is called Nux, and so is called the Nut also. It hath that name Nux, for dropping of the leaues thereof gréeueth and noieth other trees a∣bout, that be nigh théreto. And many La∣tines call this trée Iouelans by another name. For this trée was somtime hallo∣wed to Iupiter. The fruit thereof hath so greate vertue, that if it be put among frogge stooles and venumous meates, it spilleth & destroieth and quencheth al the venim that is therein, as Isidore sayeth libro. 17. The fruit thereof hath a harde Page [unnumbered] rinde without and bitter, and a swéete kernell within. And all manner Apples that be closed in an hard skinne, rind, or shale be called Nuts, as Pince, Castanie, and Auellane, and other such, as he saith, and the Nut trée is high and long, with large boughs and knots, and with broad leaues and sinewy, euen long, and sharp in the ends with euill smell and sauour. The shadow therof grieueth them that sléepe there vnder, & bréedeth diuerse sick∣nesses and euills, but the fruite thereof, leaues and rinde, accorde to medicines. For as Dioscorides saith, the iuyce of ye roote and of the rinde, of the more Nut trée, dronke to the quantitie of one Oxa∣gum, helpeth against the difficultye of pissing, and is contrarie to Feauers that come with shiuering and colde, if it bée dronke with vineger. And sayth also fur∣thermore, that it dieth & cleanseth haire, and letteth falling thereof, and hath ma∣ny vertues and might. The fruit thereof accordeth both to meate and medicine: And there be many manner of nuts, but we speake most touching meate and me∣dicine of the more nuts, that be French Nuts, and of the lesse that be Auelanes. The common Nut is called Gallica a∣mong many men, and is diuerse in sub∣staunce, vertue, and shape•. For as Isaac sayth in Dietis. The Nut in substaunce is gréene, or new, or ripe. In the first dis∣position the skinne and the rinde is greene and sowre, and vitter, and smorch∣eth his hand that handleth it hard. And there within is a shell or a shale, ye wax∣eth harder and harder, and there within is the nut kernell, that is sauourye and full swéete, and the kernell that is with∣in the shale is closed in the skinne, to saue the tender kernell from colde and hardnesse of the shale. And therefore that skinne is more softe then the shale, and more hard then the kernell, and more bitter founde of them that haue assayed. And the néerer ripe the nut is, the sooner the skinne forsaketh the shale, & cleaueth the faster to the kernel, so that vnneth the kernell may be departed therefrom, but by hot water, or by some other craft, that tempereth that skinne, and maketh it softe. And the gréene Nut is kindly lesse hot and drie then the olde, aud gréeueth therefore the lesse. And is enimye to all venim, if it be with Rew eaten fasting. And Isaac saith, some Nuts bée fresh and new, and some be old, and some be meane betwéene both. In the fresh is most moi∣sture, and the meane be more drye, and in the olde moisture is wasted by work∣ing of heate that maketh digestion in the humours.
And the olde be generally more vnc∣tuous. Therefore many thereof caten, turneth soone into chularike humours, & namelye men with hotte complection, if they eate thereof many and oft. For in them it bréedeth head ach, and maketh them turne giddy, but they bée couenable nourishing to them that eate them tem∣peratly, and be of temperate complecti∣on. For so they be defied well inough. The vertue thereof is knowne by effect of medicine, for generally they keepe and saue the body against venimous things. For by his ventositie it stoppeth ye veins, in the body, and suffereth not venim to passe to the spirituall members.
Also Nuts euenly led with salt, rew, garlike, and honie medled helpeth in the viting of a wood hound, if some be swal∣lowed, and some layde to the fore with∣out, for it draweth out the venim migh∣tely, and wasteth it also. And nuts stam∣ped and medled with honnye, tempereth wonderfully, and dissolueth cholarik po∣stumes and flematike also. Also Nultes stamped and laid as a plaister to the na∣uell, destroieth postumes that bréed with∣in, as Isaac, saith in Dietis.
(*Walenuts are of two sorts, the big∣ger and the lesse, and according to the soile whereon they grow, so is their good∣nesse. The thinnest rinded or shelled nuts, are commonly best and very whol∣some, to eate against poisen, eaten before greate drinking, staieth the head from lightnesse.)
And Nuts be diuersly shapen. For some be round, and some euenlong, and some plaine and continued within, as it fareth in Auclane, and in Nutmegges. And some haue cleftes in the sides, and be distinguished in the toppe, as it were with the shape of a Triangle: as it fa∣reth Page 306 in great French nuts, in the which generally the shape of the crosse is prin∣ted within, as they know well that take bred thereto.
(*Of late forth of the Indies hath bene brought diuers sorts of Nuts, whose na∣tural properties are not perfectly know∣en, as Nux Indica, Coecus, some in husks, lyke Beanes, some like kidncies of a browne coulour, some round, some square, and some shape: which nuties I haue, but as yet no proper name to giue them.)