Health Care

Pages from the Prescription Book of W W Johnson, Llandrindod Wells: Page Three

Prescription for Master Gibbs
Powys County Archives

Master A Gibbs

Rx Camphor spirit ½ drachm
Lemon syrup ½ oz
Acacia powder 5 grains
Water to 3 ounces
2 tbsp every 4 hours

Camphor spirit - "It is a popular remedy, either taken by the mouth or used as a snuff, for the relief of colds." (BPC)
Lemon syrup - "Used as a flavouring agent in acid mixtures." (BPC)
Acacia powder - "Gum acacia . . . is a variety of gum arabic obtained from certain species of Acacia . . ." (BPC) - used to make syrupy mixtures

Prescriptions for Mrs. Hamilton and Williams
Powys County Archives

Mrs Hopkins

Rx Mercuric nitrate ointment 10 grains
Vaseline 1 drachm
Whale oil ointment 2 drachm
Make an ointment. The eye salve to be applied to the
margin of the lids every night.
Rx Wine of opium ½ drachm
Aluminium 12 gr
Glycerin 1 ½ drachms
Distilled Rose water to 4 oz.
The eye lotion to be applied twice daily

Mrs Williams, Brighton Place
Rx Zinc sulphate 12 grains
Dilute phosphoric acid 3 drachms
Liquor of strychnine 40 minims
Syrup of Mori 1 oz
Water to 6 oz.
1 tbsp. twice a day

Mrs Hopkins

Unguentum Hydrargyri Nitratis, or Citrine Ointment, was used for skin complaints e.g. psoriasis, acne.
Vaseline - "an excellent basis for ointments" (Potter)
Whale oil - "Spermaceti is a constant component of domestic cerates and cold creams, as represented by Unguentum Cetacei. . ." (BPC). A cerate is "an unctuous preparation for external application, of a consistence intermediate between that of an ointment and a plaster, so that it can be spread upon cloth without the use of heat, but does not melt when applied to the skin." (
Vinum Opii, Wine of Opium (Sydenham's Laudanum)" was used for "pain from any cause" (Potter) - in this case probably conjunctivitis
Aluminium - poss. Alum, used as an astringent
Glycerine & rosewater - emollient, used in skin lotions

Mrs Williams

Zinc sulphate - "The Sulphate is a specific emetic, acting promptly. . ." (Potter)
Phosphoric acid - "The agent is an excellent remedy for the so-called nervous dyspepsia. It adds tone to the nervous structure of the stomach, digestive and assimilative organs, materially aiding these functions." (Ellingwood). Also, "Phosphorus is used in . . . Chronic Nervous Exhaustion, when the nerve centres are implicated." (Potter)
Liquor of strychnine - used as nerve stimulant and stomachic tonic
Syr Mori - Syrup of mulberries - used to flavour and colour medicines
Prescription for Miss Bebb
Powys County Archives

Miss Bebb


Potassium bicarbonate 2 drachms
Dilute hydrocyanic acid 15 minims
Tincture of ginger 15 minims
Compound of Gentian tincture 1 ½ drachm
Add water to make 8 ounces


Citric acid powder 10 grains
Make into powders send 8

Two tablespoonfuls to be taken every 3 hours with one of the powders as directed

Potassium bicarbonate - "used in -- Acidity and Atonic Dyspepsia, the Bicarbonate, or Liquor Potassae with a bitter, in small doses before meals. If given after meals larger doses are required for temporary alleviation by neutralizing the food acids." (Potter)
Ac Hydrocyan dil - Acidum hydrocyanicum dilutum, also known as prussic acid - "Taken internally its action exerted on the stomach is especially useful in gastrodynia [pain in the stomach], the vomiting of pregnancy, and other forms of vomiting."(BPC). "Hydrocyanic Acid is a very useful and pleasant remedy. It is well employed in . . . Gastralgia, . . . it is one of the most efficient remedies, also in Headache and Vertigo due to stomachal derangement; and in Nervous Vomiting."(Potter)
Tincture of ginger - Tinctura zingiberis - used to "promote the secretion and flow of saliva" (Potter) - and as carminative & stimulant to "aid in the expulsion of gas from the stomach and intestines, by increasing peristalsis, stimulating the circulation, etc. They are also diffusible stimulants." (Potter)
Tr. Gent. Co. - Tinctura gentianae composita, or compound tincture of gentian, was made from rhizomes & roots of Gentiana lutea (Gentian) - "Compound tincture of gentian is used as an aromatic bitter and flavouring agent" (BPC). A bitter was used to increase appetite.
Pulv. Ac citric - Acidum citricum - "It is commonly administered in effervescing mixtures, in which the citric acid is directed to be added in the form of a powder, or solution, to an alkaline mixture." (BPC). Also used to neutralise the mixture, to keep it from being too alkaline, and as an antacid.

Prescription Book: Page One - Page Two
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