From London's Ghost Acres

Borax is a salt of Boric acid (Boracic acid), a boron compound, and a mineral. It is used in a wide range of products, including detergents, cosmetics, insecticides, an anti-fungal, fire retardant, and a texturing agent in cooking. Borax has a low toxicity, and a large dose (2.66g/kg) is required before any sever symptoms occur. (

Borax is included in remedies listed in the Compendium that treat dry or chapped hands, lips, and nipples, and other skin ailments. It is also used as a mouthwash with combined in a solution of myrrh, and when ingested it can be used to treat acidity within the digestive system of children.

British Pharmacopoeia 1867

Borax Borax

Syn: sodae Biboras

“A native salt. It is also made artificially by boiling together, in proper proportions, boracic acid and carbonate of soda.” (59)


  • “In transparent colourless crustals, sometimes slightly effloresced, with a weak alkaline reaction” (59)

Preparations of Borax

Glycerine of Borax / Glyerinum Boracis

  • Borax in powder (1 oz) and glycerine (4 fl oz) dissolved together (using a pestle and mortar) (146)

Borax Honey / Mel Boracis

  • borax, in a fine powder (64 grains) is mixed with clarified honey (1 oz) (207)

A Compendium of Domestic Medicine, 1865

"Borax is extensively employed on the Continent in the treatment of infantile diseases." It can treat acidity in the digestive system ("acidity of the primae viae and aphthous excoriatons of the mouth and fauces of children,") (54) Mr. Saunders used a mixture of borax to treat the gums when they become spongy, and Sir Astley Cooper recommended a borax lotion for chapped nipples.

Remedies Containing or to be used with Borax

  • Borax (54): powdered borax used to treat acidity in children (described in description). A linctus can be made with Honey of borax to be applied to affections of the mouth. Another application of borax (to be administered under the influence of mercury) contains powdered borax.
  • Glycerine (92): combined with borax to create a lotion that can treat "chapped hands or nipples, fissures of the lips, irritations of the skin of any kind, as after shaving or exposure to the sun, or for roughness, scurf, or dandriff, on any part of the skin."
  • Tincture of Myrrh and Borax (182): "is strongly recommended by Mr Saunders and many of the most eminent dentists throughout the United Kingdom," it acts as a mouthwash ("particularly when the gums are spongy, or have receded from the teeth"), freshens breath. When used daily it will maintain the health of the gums, and prevent toothaches.

Diseases Treated with Borax

  • Chapped Hands (240): borax in powder
  • Putrid Sore Throat (250): tincture of myrrh and borax included in a gargle
  • Aphthous Ulceration, or Thrush (287): powdered borax and loaf-sugar used as part of a rinse/mouthwash
  • Scald-Head (300): Ringworm: "the eruption termed ringworm is also too well known to require any description." Borax is included in a lotion that is to be applied every night.

Medical Articles Containing Borax

  • For Scorbutic Affection of the Gums (315): borax
  • Lotion from Chilblains (317): borax

Prescriptions Containing Borax


  • Gargle for Scorbutic Affections of the Gums (341): powdered borax


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