CALENDULA. IN certain grey house in a certain grey street the two lower windows act as beacons of light to the whole neighbourhood by sending out rays of joy and happiness, at any rate to one passer- by, for inside the windows, lighting them up are enormous garlands of flowers, topped, practically all the year round by the golden orb of the Calendula or Marigold, which is tastefully and artistically interspersed by branches of different shades of green.


IN certain grey house in a certain grey street the two lower windows act as beacons of light to the whole neighbourhood by sending out rays of joy and happiness, at any rate to one passer- by, for inside the windows, lighting them up are enormous garlands of flowers, topped, practically all the year round by the golden orb of the Calendula or Marigold, which is tastefully and artistically interspersed by branches of different shades of green. The Marigold is one of the most decorative flowing that I know; its colour reflects the health-giving qualities of the warming and healing sunlight.

If there is anything in colour therapy, this herb certainly seems to emanate it, for its blossoms open to the daylight and sun and close as the sun descends to the lower horizon. It is lick a clock, the flowers open at 9 in the morning, and close punctually at 3 p.m., and it taken no notice of the daylight-saving bill of the humans. This peculiarity has been noticed by many writers in the past. Shakespeare refers to it in “The Winters Tale:.

“The Marigold that goes to bed with the sun.

And with him rises weeping.”.

The name Calendula is derived from the fact that it is said to open its blood on the calends (the first days of the month), and Marigold is associated by some writers with the Virgin Mary and by others with Queen Mary of Stuart fame.

For centuries it has been a pot herb and the flowers were dried for soups and broths; and a yellow dye was extracted from them for colouring cheeses.

The old herbalists, Gerard and Culpepper, refer to it “as a comforter of the heart and spirit”; but modern medicine and modern cookery ignore this this old-fashioned herb. In these days of cocktails and chain-smoking, the art of cooking has been forgotten and we like to live out of the famous 57 varieties of tine. We only see tins in our store cupboards not the dried flower heads of our ancestors, which gave flavours to their dishes and soups and infusions. Such a pity !

Modern medicine too, like the pharisee, walks proudly by and taken no notice of the humble herbs of the fields; all thee drugs must come from the smoking stills of the analytical chemists,m and be tested out on the living bodies of innocent and suffering animals, before they are passed as suitable-for a short time-in the experimental kitchen of the up-to-days analyst, who then passes them on to the credulous son of Aesculapius to dispense to suffering humanity and with accounts of their effects in the medical press, until they are superseded by a more recent product of the art of the manufacturer.

The present war makes ones thoughts turn to First Aid and the treatment of wounds. Sepsis is the great danger of open wounds and injuries, and antiseptics are the answer of the surgeon o this enemy. Unfortunately antiseptics which are potent enough to kill the micro organisms are also injurious to the living cells of body and the defending white blood corpuscles which are sent out to kill off the attacking microbes: Carbolic Acid, and the mercurial salts and iodine play havoc with the leucocytes well as with the deadly germs, and even the more recent antiseptics are only a degree better. The ideal antiseptic is still being searched for.

Iodine is the usual advice given for local treatment for cuts and abrasions. Here and there a voice of warning is raised which condemns his indiscriminate use of Iodine to abrasions of the skin and open wounds, as Iodine burns and tans the skin and allows the germs to invade the deeper tissues underneath. Aseptic treatment or surgical cleanliness with plenty of warm soap is much better then pouring Iodine or other antiseptics on to wounds. The Bible mentions the use of wine as a vulnerary; alas the rabid teetotaller of the generation has made the moderate use of wine and its use in medicine impossible by heavy taxation and we have to look round for other substances.

Here it is, we high ourselves back to Marigold. It is the best homoeopathic wound dressing and antiseptic that I know. Alas ! that so few, even keen homoeopaths, appreciate its value as such. I worked for years in various homoeopathic hospitals and never saw it used; we used the same lotions and tinctures and dressings as the orthodox hospitals. And yet there were a few valiant spirits who prescribed the use of Calendula in would treatment. There was Dr. Carleton, who used it in peace time in his hospital in America for all kinds of operations.

Calendula officinalis is THE SIMILAR to clean cuts, would with or without loss of substance, sharp cutting pains, redness, rawness and sometimes stinging pains during febrile heat. There are the indications in the Materia Medica, and this has been proved to be correct in practice. Carleton states he prefers the succus Calendula to the tincture. In haemorrhage he states that a douche of clear tincture of Calendula acts like magic and promotes rapid healing. I have proved the truth of this myself in several instances. I was looking on once while a veterinary nurse was docking the tails of some pedigree puppies of a few days old.

She cut the tails across and then applied pure tincture of Calendula, and immediately the bleeding stopped, and there was hardly a whimper from any of these wriggling pups; when I saw them the next day all the tails had healed up beautifully. An old lady of eighty fell out of bed and injured her nose and there was also constant oozing the lower lip. I applied Calendula tincture half, of the bridge of the nose and to the lower lip; the bleeding stopped in a remarkably short time and within twelve hours the jagged cut on the nose had healed over, and the swollen oozing lower lip had returned to normal size. And that was in an old women where the healing powers are naturally slowed down.

Dr. Carleton mentions an instance of a physician stumbling against the sharp edge of a carriage and scraping his shin badly against the sharp edge of the board, which produced a deep and extensive cut right down to the bone. Two hours later, Carleton laid back the periosteum and skin carefully in place and dressed if with Calendula cerate. here was much cutting, stinging pain at first which rapidly subsided, and in a few days the shin was well ! I have seen cases of like injury to th shin bone and it usually means months of treatment on orthodox lines. So you see the contrast is really much in favour of homoeopathic treatment.

This surgeon enumerates many operation cases which he treated with Calendula locally, clean operation cases. He used the Calendula for amputations, for trephining of the skull, for swelling of the gums after dental interference, for haemorrhage after circumcision, for mopping out inside the abdominal cavity after operation for abdominal tumours and ovarian cysts; and his result were invariably excellent.

But remember, Calendula is the similar to clean cutter and incised wounds. It acts on the epithelium and promotes the rapid growth of the normal cells; but if you use Calendula while there is deep-seated sepsis, the superficial tissues will close over too rapidly and tissues will be shut in with disastrous effects. In these cases get the septic wound clear first with Hypericum dressing and then apply Calendula later.

I have said several times Calendula is a similar to clean operation wounds and cuts; no only by local application but also given it potentized by the mouth, as soon as the operation and the effects of the anaesthetics are over. It will hasten the healing process.

Another doctor who sings the prowess of Calendula is Dr. Petrie Hoyle, the American doyen of homoeopathy. He used it extensively in the War Hospital he superintended in France during the 1914-18 war, and the visiting French surgeon complimented the doctor on the cleanliness and sweetness of the air in his wards: : there were no cloying, sickly smells of antiseptics about,” he said, and moreover he remarked on and complimented him on the exceedingly low mortality-rate and the quick recovery-rate of the wounded. He took full particulars of the uses to which Calendula was putt and, I believe, passed on this knowledge to other surgeons in the war hospitals.

Calendula officinalis is a home-grown product; it grown easily in the cottage gardens, and we should make more free use of these gifts that God has given us.

Let m quote what is said about the preparation of Calendula in herbal, and later I shall quote the preparation of Calendula mother tincture from the American Pharmacopoeia.

(1) The herbal recipe:.

Use the ray florets of the deep, orange-flowered common variety of Marigold, which should be collected, when the flowers are fully open in fine weather in the morning when the dew has been dried by the sun. Dry them quickly in the shade in a current of warm air, spreading them out on sheets of paper, without touching each other. When the flowers are dried, keep them in clean glass jars, stoppered against dust, and make an infusion of the strength of one ounce to a pint of boiling water, externally externally as a local application, for slow-healing superficial chronic ulcers and clan cuts.

(2) The recipe in the American Pharmacopoeia more elaborate:.

Use the fresh leaves at the tip of the plant, together with the blossoms and buds, which are chopped and pounded to pulp enclosed to a pulp enclosed in a pieces of new linen and subjected to pressure. The expressed juice is then, by brisk agitations, mixed with an equal part by weight of alcohol. This mixture is allowed to stand in a wellstoppered bottle for eight days in a dark, cool place and then filtered. This makes the mother tincture.

I am told that a marigold flower can wasp or bee and will rapidly make it disappear.

I find by personal use that Calendula lotion is first-rate as a local application to vulva and perineum in maternity cases. I usually spray the perineum with thee pure tincture, it the perineum has been sutured, and apply moist of Calendula 1 in 25 to the parts. The lochia becomes sweet very quickly and there is no systemic reaction and the healing takes place in. less than half the time.

I like Calendula ointment for the cute and cracks inside the nostril which are very irritating and take a long time to heal sometimes; also the ragged edges round the nails which are painful and sting, heal overnight with an application of Calendula ointment. Personally I prefer Calendula ointment to Boracic, though I have known some superstitions people object to the aromatic smell of the Calendula.

The Marigold is a wonderful flower, a magic herb; looking at it, it raises ones spirits, gives one hope; and remember this humble servant of God is willing to serve you further, in the kitchen and in the domestic medicine cupboard its uses are many fold. It provides the healing touch of nature and prevents the spread of disease, the spread of sepsis-a wonderful mission.

Dorothy Shepherd
Dorothy Shepherd 1885 – 1952 - British orthodox physician who converted to homeopathy. Graduated from Hering College in Chicago. She was a pupil of J.T.Kent. Author of Magic of the Minimum Dose, More Magic of the Minimum Dose, A Physician's Posy, Homeopathy in Epidemic Diseases.