Violets in Forest, by Roya Azal

Oxymel, an ancient vinegar and honey therapy from Iran

“Finely cut herbs and plants  such as fresh tips of pine tree, mint, rosemary etc and add to apple cider vinegar for about 6 weeks. Filter vinegar and mix 1:3 with honey (1 part vinegar, 3 parts honey). Boil down to one quarter of former volume. Fill into bottles (no metal lid please) and keep in cool dark place.”

Oxymel, is a medicinal drink or syrup compounded of vinegar and honey and other ingredients. About 1200 types of oxymel were also described and their considerations and contraindications were presented in Medieval Persian pharmaceutical manuscripts and Avicenna’s Canon of Medicine.

Oxymel in medieval Persian medicine was a kind of syrup which is called traditionally Sekanjabin in Persia. Oxymel contains vinegar and honey and is prepared by mixing vinegar (one unit), honey (two units) and potentially water (four units) as well as herbs, roots, blossoms, spices and so on.

I personally favor this way of preparation:

Finely cut herbs and plants  such as fresh tips of pine tree, mint, rosemary aso and add to apple cider vinegar for about 6 weeks. Filter vinegar and mix 1:3 with honey (1 part vinegar, 3 parts honey). Boil down to one quarter of former volume. Fill into bottles (no metal lid please) and keep in cool dark place.

I am now describing a couple of different ancient Oxymel formulations based on research of the University of Shiraz, Iran. I have found also some modern day Oxymel recipes which I will share in later posts. I find oxymel to be a very intriguing remedy to treat a wide variety of ailments.

Violets in Forest, by Roya Azal

Violets in Forest, by Roya Azal

Afsumali
It was used orally against sciatica, arthralgia, epilepsy and as an antidote for snakebite. Similarly, it is beneficial in complications of opium and potentially fatal poisons. Vinegar (2.25kg), salt (976g), honey (4.9kg) and water (3.5kg) are mixed and reduced on a mild fire. It is removed from fire after boiling ten times.

Sikanjabin al-buzuri
It was used to relieve fever and can be effective in gastritis. It has diuretic effect and mixed with common nettle it is beneficial in hepatic obstructions. Wine-vinegar (4.5 kg) and water (9kg) were mixed and then combined with root peels of fennel and with precious coral in (90g) and celery (90g), fennel seeds (90g), anise (90g), and celery (90g).

After a day the mixture is reduced on a mild fire until one-sixth of it remains.

Mos ‘hel al safra oxymel (oxymel for purging out yellow bile)
It is prepared from some clarified honey and old vinegar. The mixture should be cooked on a mild fire. Thereafter powdered extract of cucumber and scammony (30g of each) should be put in a piece of clot hand suspended over
the mixture until the content of the cloth is dissolved in the mixture. When the mixture has thickened it should be removed from fire.

Purgative squill oxymel
Squill is a variety of the Asian  lily. The squill is prepared in vinegar and sold as “lily vinegar”. To prepare as high potent Oxymel, coarsely pound peeled squill bulb (900g), ginger (30g), celery seeds (60g), wild carrot (15g), fennel (30g), anise (30g), ajwain (15g) and curnin (30g), asafoetida root (30g), pellitory (30g), mint (30g), pennyroyal (30g), lovage (15g), caraway (7g), common rue (210g), flowers of hyssop (30g) and cassia leaves (15g) and soak in a mixture of 9.72kg of squill vinegar, 3.24kg of clarified honey and 1.62g of ripe grape juice. It should be filtered and kept in a clean glass for one week.

Simple squill oxymel
Squill is a variety of the Asian  lily. The squill is prepared in vinegar and sold as “squill vinegar”. It is beneficial for asthma, cough and respiratory complications. Simply mix with honey. Drink with warm water.

Pomegranate oxymel
It was administered in chronic fevers and has useful effects on liver and stomach function. Sweet and sour pomegranate juices (200g of each) are mixed with vinegar (lOOg) and then honey (200g) is dissolved in the mixture and all is boiled to be reduced down to one quarter of former volume.

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Roya Azal

Roya Azal ~ Woman, Blogger, Geek, Artist, Healing Spirit.

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