Aristolochia clematitis, 1 of 4

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Aristolochia clematitis
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Birthwort

Plantae
Pre-dicots (Primitive flowering plants)
Piperales
Family: Aristolochiaceae
Godstow Nunnery, Oxford
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This plant is thought to have been introduced for medicinal purposes a long time ago. The name suggests its historical use - to promote uterine contractions. Its continued presence at the ruined Godstow Nunnery is though to date back to its use there in mediaeval times.

Charlie Tomson writes: "Use of the plant for medicinal purposes, or accidental ingestion, has now been shown to be the cause of a severe type of irreversible kidney damage, known as Aristolochia nephropathy. This disease was previously known as Chinese Herbs Nephropathy (following an epidemic of disease in Belgium resulting from inclusion of Aristolochia extracts in a herbal slimming remedy) and as Balkan nephropathy."
13 July 2005
Category: Wild-growing plants and fungi of the British Isles
 
British Isles status: introduced after 1500 AD


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Photographer: J R Crellin

About the picture:
NIKON D70
13/07/2005 14:55:02
1/60 sec - F/16
Lens: 60mm f/2.8 D
Sensitivity: ISO 1600
Light value: 9.9



See more of these categories: Wild plants; Intr. after 1500; Birthwort family; Oxfordshire; Gallery; Flowering plants; Pre-dicots; Piperales; The plant kingdom; Aristolochia; Flower