Herbal medicine in the time of Shakespeare

Oxford Botanic Garden | £15 | Age 18+

'To use? Or not to use?' That is the question.

There are at least 160 references to plants within Shakespeare's works, namely flowers and herbs. In the beautiful setting of the Oxford Botanic Garden, The Oxfordshire Shakespeare Festival director, Tom McDonnell, and Natural Medicine Practitioner, Roz Jones, will present an exciting talk on herbal medicine in Shakespeare's time. At this time, practitioners of medicine not only used the five basic senses in the diagnostic and prognostic process, but also the revered power of the sixth sense, astrology, astronomy, the weather and sometimes magic.

Roz Jones will also concoct a number of medicinal brews using fresh and dried herbs, brews which were believed to counteract the effects of the Plague as well as love potions and sleep tonics. As part of the event, Chris Thorogood, the Deputy Director and Head of Science at the Oxford Botanic Garden, will demonstrate the uprooting of a Mandrake, followed by a short talk on the plant which has long been used in magic rituals. To tie in with the theme of the evening, ambient music from the Tudor era will be performed by Dan Glazebrook and Spencer Williams.