formerly printed by Rhwymbooks


A 17th-century housewives' handbook
of cookery, herbals, and medicine

attributed to

John Partridge




The 1653 Address to the Reader


The following list preserves the numbering and wording of the original contents list. This differs in many places from the chapter titles.

1. to make marchpane
2. to guild a marchpane, tart or such like
3. to bake quinces
4. to keep quinces unpaired a whole year
5. to make rose vinegar
6. super paste to make conceits for banquets
7. to make orange confects
8. blanch powder for rosted quinces
9. to conserve quinces in sirrop
10. to conserve plums or Damasins in sirrop
11. to make walnuts in sirrop
12. to make marmalade of quinces
13. marmalade of Damasins or Prunes
14. succade of peeles of oranges or limons
15. greene ginger
16. manus Christi
17. Aqua composia
18. Aqua vitae
19. to make divers necessary oiles of great vertue
20-24. to make conserves of roses, violets, buglosse, borrage, rosemary
25. to keepe cherries or gooseberries condite
26. to make gelly of quinces after my Lady Gray Clement sort
27. to preserve quinces all the yeare as it was used for King Edward
28. to make quinces in sirrop
29. to make a conserve of Damasins
30. to preserve Damasins
31. to make wardens in sirrop
32. to make prunes in sirrop
33-36. the vertue of conserve of succary, Eldern-flowers, sorrell, maiden-haire
37-40. to make conserves of Elecampana roots, of Acornes, or Gladea, of strawberries, of cherries and Barberries, with their vertue
41. to make all kinds of sirrops
42. a violet powder for woolen clothes & etc.
43. a sweet powder for Napery and all linnen clothes & etc.
44. a pomander
45. a fine fumigation to cast upon the coales
46. the same in Oslets
47. a moist fume upon a fuming dish
48. a fumigation for presse and clothes that no moth shall breed therein
49. a perfume for a chamber
50. a perfume of the Damaske
51. an odiferous sweet ball against the plague
52. an odiferous white powder
53. a fine red powder
54. a sweet black powder
55. a powder wherewith to make a sweet water
56. Conclusion and rules to be used in distilling, and ordering of
each herb or flowre before they be distilled
57. to make water of the same colour of the flowrs that you distill
58. a compound water to perfume gloves, or other things
59. to make Damaske water
60. another manner of making Damaske water


61. The knowledge of the names, and the naturall disposition of divers diseases
62. Divers necessary Observations, both Physicall and Astronomicall
63, 64, &c until you come to
76: Certaine secret remedies appertaining to women

[The titles to these "secret" chapters se are interestingly suppressed from the Table of Contents itself. The chapter headings are as follows:]

63. To make a Wioman have her flowres
64. For the fumigation of the Matrice and for the falling of the same
65. For sore falling of the Matrice
66. For the flowers to be brought out shortly
67. For the mother rising upwards
68. For the mother that riseth upon a man
69. To bring forth Tearmes
70. A good bath for the Flowres, proved
71. To bring forth the Secundine, and to cleanse the Matrice
72. To cease a woman's Flowrs
73. To bring forth flowres and the Secundine and a dead child
74. If a woman have too many Flowres
75. To cleanse the Matrice
76. For to cease flowres, and for faintnesse and casting in child-bed
77. Powder of Holland against the colic
78. Powder to make the belly soluble
79. A recipe to strengthen in them that are brought low with longsicknesse
80. To make loosings
81. To perfume gloves
82. A prefume for Chests and cupboards & also for gloves
83. To color gloves
84. To make Musk Sope
85. To make red sealing wax
86. To keep Damsins in sirrop
87. A water for the face, used of Gentlewomen
88. A water for heat in the face and breaking out with pimples
89. To know whether a woman shall ever conceive or no
90. To make a barren woman beare children
91. To make a woman have a quick and speedy deliverance of her children without paine or at least very little
92. To stop the running of the Reynes five several ways
93. To strengthen the seed
94. For an Ague in a woman's brest
95. For breasts that be sore with milk
96. For a sore brest
97. To keep a woman's brest from breaking
98. For the unnatural heat of the liver
99. For the Canker in the mouth
100. To make the face faire and the breath sweet
101. To make haire as yellow as gold
102. To drive away all venomous beasts from your house
103. Against all poyson eaten and drunken
104. To drive away lice
105. How to make a sovereigne water
106. To make a water that taketh off all staining, dying and spots from the hands of Artificers, that get them by working,
and make them white and faire. It is good for them that be sun-burned.
107. To heale all manner of inflammation and evill dispositions of the aire, lepry faces, great swollen legs or inflamed hands
108. A singular ointment which healeth all burnings with fire, not leaving any skarre where it hath been
109. To draw an arrow-head or other iron out of a wound
110. For him that hath a bunch in his head, or that hath his head swollen with a fall.
111. To know what time in the yeare herbs and flowers should be gathered in full strength
112. Here follow the sundry vertues of roses for diverse medicines
113. The sundry vertues of lillies
114. The sundry vertues of Milfoyle
115. The sundry vertues of Rosemary
116. For to make a special sovereign water, which is of three colours, and it is called the mother of all waters, which
is very excellent to cure the canker, the pocks, or leprosie, or any other kind of superfluous humours, or any sore old or new
117. A perfect way to cure the loathsome disease of the French pocks paines in the loynes, lameness of limmes, paleness of colour, loathsome scabbes, or any other filthy disease proceeding of superfluous or evill humours, as also to assuage over-grosse and foggie fat bellies, and that without danger.
118. The manner to make another kinde of diet drinke of stronger operation, for the same diseases, which by the practice only of one man, hath done very great good, as well in the city of London as in divers parts of the Realm
119. The manner to chuse the best Guaicum or Lignum vitae
120. A most certaine and approved remedie against all manner of pestilence or plague, be it never so vehement
121. To make a sirrop of vinegar, good for many things
122. To comfort the heart, and take away melancholy
123. A sirrop to cleanse the brest and the lungs, the cough and the plurisie
124. For spetting either of lights or lungs
125. For worms in young children
126. For the swelling of the cods
127. For him that cannot hold his water
128. For the head-ach
129. For the griefe of the stomacke
130. For the itch
131. A garg'll for a sore throat
132. A water for scabs, ulcers, and pustes
133. To make water to take out all spot of cloth of gold and velvet
134. To take spots of grease and oyle out of all sorts of cloth, white or other
135. To take all manner of spots out of silke
136. To take spots out of cloth
137. A soveraigne remedy for the cough
138. To keep pour Poultry from destroying with weasels
139. A briefe Treatise of Urines
140. Hereafter follow all the urines that betoken death, as well the urine of the man as of the woman

Appendix: John Partridge's 1584 Text