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Unformatted text preview: Reading 17-1 6 The silphium has a great deal of thick root; its stalk is like ferula in size, and is nearly as thick; the leaf which they call maspeton, is like celery and of a golden color; it has a broad seed, which is leaf-like, and is called the phyllon. The stalk lasts only a year, like that of ferula. Now in spring it sends up this maspeton, which purges sheep and greatly fattens them, and makes their esh wonderfully delicious; after that it sends up a stalk, which is eaten, it is said, in all ways, boiled and roast, and this too, purges the body in forty days. It has two kinds of juice, the stalk-juice, and the root-juice. The root has a black bark, which is stripped off. Others say that the root of silphion grows to the length of a cubit [about 18 inches] or a little longer, and in the middle of this is a head, which is the highest part and almost comes above ground, and is called the milk; from this then grows the stalk and from that the magydaris which is also called the phyllon; but...
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- Summer '10