The Universal Herbal: Bixa Orellana; Arnotto or Anotta.

The Universal Herbal;
or botanical, medical and agricultural dictonary.
Containing an account of All the known Plants in the World, arranged according to the Linnean system. Specifying the uses to which they are or may be applied, whether as food, as medicine, or in the arts and manufactures.
With the best methods of propagation, and the most recent agricultural improvements.
collected from indisputable Authorities.
Adapted to the use of the farmer - the gardener - the husbandman - the botanist - the florist - and country housekeepers in general.
By Thomas Green.
Vol. I
Printed at the Caxton Press by Henri Fisher.
Printer in Ordinary to His Majesty.
This shrub rises with an upright stem to the height of eight or ten feet, sending out many branches at the top, forming a regular head. The name of this plant is variously spelt in England, as arnotto, arnotta, anotta, anato, anoto, annotto. The drug called terra orellana, or orieana, roucou, or arnotto, is thius prepared from the red pulp which covers the seeds. The contents of the fruit are taken out and thrown into a wooden vessel, where as much jot water is poured upon them as is necessary to suspend the red powder or pulp; and this is gradually washed off with the assistance of the hand, or of a spatula or spoon. When the seeds appear quite naked, they are taken out, and the wash is left to settle; after which the water is gently poured away, and the sediment put into shal low vessels, to be dried by degrees in the shade. After acquiring a due consistence, it is made into balls or cakes, and set to dry in an airy place, until it is perfectly firm. Some persons first pound the contents of the fruit with wooden pestles, then covering them with water, leave them to steep six days: this liquor being passed through a coarse sieve, and afterwards through three finer ones, is again put into the vat or wooden vessel, and left to ferment a week. It is then boiled until it is pretty thick, and when cool it is spread out to dry, and then made up into balls, which are usually wrapped up in leaves. Arnotto, of a good quality, is of the colour of fire, bright within, soft to the touch, and dissolves entirely in water. It is reputed to be cooling and cordial, and is much used by the Spaniards in their chocolate and soups, both to heighten the flavour, and to give them an agreeable colour. It is esteemed good in bloody fluxes, and disorders of the kidneys: mixed with lemon-juice and a guit, it makes the crimson paint with which the Indians adorn their persons. It was formerly used by dyers to form the colour called aurora; but at present it is not held in such estimation as a dye, though it still maintains its ground with painters. Arnotto is well known to be the drug which is used for dyeing cheese in Gloucestershire, under the name of cheese-colouring. It is used in Holland for colouring butter. The bark makes good ropes for the common plantation uses in the West Indies; and pieces of the wood are used by the Indians to procure fire by friction. It is propagated by seeds, and may be cultivated with great ease. It is planted in many parts of Jamaica, Barbadoes, Cayenne, &c. in rich soils and shady situations, shooting luxuriantly near rivulets. The seed should be sown in a small pot, filled with light rich earth, and plunged into a hot-bed of tanner's bark, where, if the bed be of a proper temperature of heat, the plants will appear in about a month after: when these are about an inch high, they should be taken out of the pot, and carefully separated, so as not to tear off their tender roots, and each replanted in a small pot filled with some rich light earth, and plunged into a fresh hot-bed of tanner's bark, observing to shade them every day until they have taken new root, after which they must be treated as other tender plants from the same country.

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