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DISCLAIMER: These pages are presented solely as a source of INFORMATION and ENTERTAINMENT and to provide stern warnings against use where appropriate. No claims are made for the efficacy of any herb nor for any historical herbal treatment. In no way can the information provided here take the place of the standard, legal, medical practice of any country. Additionally, some of these plants are extremely toxic and should be used only by licensed professionals who have the means to process them properly into appropriate pharmaceuticals. One final note: many plants were used for a wide range of illnesses in the past, but be aware that many of the historical uses have proven to be ineffective for the problems to which they were applied.

aka Sappan Tree
Caesalpinia sappan

PART USED: Heart wood
BRAZILWOOD (Caesalpina echinata): Brazilin (an extract) has been used like litmus as an indicator. The Tupinamba and other South American tribes produced a red dye from the plant material.

Small, prickly, evergreen native to India and Malasian Peninsula.


In Chinese medicine the heartwood has been used in decoction form to treat blood-related problems. Has been used to treat coughing and spitting of blood, bruises, bleeding both during and after pregnancy, and excessive menses.
In Chinese medicine it has been given to women after labor as a tonic.

Heartwood yields a red dye.

©2004 by Ernestina Parziale, CH