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Oranges are citrus fruit grown in tropical and subtropical locations.

Oranges (including the juice, pulp, rind, and oils) were used primarily as flavourers in the Pharmacopeia and Compendium. It was also included in drinks given to the sick.

Sometimes combined in database with lemons.

British Pharmacopoeia 1867

Bitter Orange Peel Aurantii Cortex

“The dried outer part of the rind of the bitter orange, Citrus Bigaradia… From the ripe fruit imported from the south of Europe” [1]


Thin, of a dark orange colour, nearly free from the white inner part of the rind; having an aromatic bitter taste, and fragrant odour.” Used in the preparations of:[2]

  • Infusum Aurantii
  • Infusum Aurantii compositum
  • Infusum Gentianae compositum
  • Mistura Gentianae
  • Spiritus Armoraciae compositus
  • Tinctura Aurantii
  • Tinctura Cinchonae composita
  • Tinctura Gentianae composita

Orange-Flower Water Aqua Aurantii Floris

“The distilled water of the flowers of the Bitter Orange tree, Citrus Bigaradia…, and of the Sweet Orange tree, Citrus Aurantium… Prepared mostly in France.” [3]


“Nearly colourless, fragrant.” Used in preparations of: [4]

  • Syrupus Aurantii Floris

Preparations of Orange

Confection of Sulphur / Confectio Sulphuris [5]

  • Sublimed sulphur (4 oz), acid tartrate of potash, in powder (1 oz), syrup of orange peel (4 fl oz)
  • dose: 60-120 grains

Infusion of Orange Peel / Infusum Aurantii [6]

  • bitter orange peel, cut small (1/2 oz), boiling distilled water (10 fl oz)
  • dose: 1-2 fl oz

Compound Infusion of Orange Peel / Infusum Aurantii compositum[7]

  • bitter orange peel, cut small (1/4 oz), fresh lemon peel, cut small (60 grais), cloves, bruised (30 grains), boiling distilled water (10 fl oz)
  • dose: 1-2 fl oz

Compound Infusion of Gentian / Infusum Gentianae compositum [8]

  • gentian root, sliced (60 grains), bitter orange peel, cut small (1/4 oz), fresh lemon peel, cut small (1/4 oz), boiling distilled water (10 fl oz)
  • dose: 1-2 fl oz

Aromatic Mixture of Iron / Mistura Ferri Aromatica[9]

  • pale-cinchona bark, in powder (1 oz), calumba root, in coarse powder (1/2 oz), cloves, bruised (1/4 oz), fine iron wire (1/2 oz), compound tincture of cardamoms (3 fl oz), tincture of orange peel (1/2 fl oz), peppermint water (as needed)
  • dose: 1-2 fl oz

Gentian Mixture / Mistura Gentianae [10]

  • syn: Infusum Gentianae Compositum, 1864
  • Gentian root, sliced (1/4 oz), Bitter orange peel, cut small (30 grains), coriander fruit, bruised (30 grains), proof spirit (2 fl oz), distilled water (8 fl oz)
  • dose: ½-1 fl oz

Compound Spirit of Horseradish / Spiritus Armoraciae compositus[11]

  • horseradish root, scraped (20 oz), bitter orange peel, cut small and bruised(20 oz), nutmeg, bruised (1/2 oz), proof spirit (1 galln), water (2 pints)
  • dose: 1-2 fl drachms

Syrup of Orange Peel / Syrupus Aurantii[12]

  • Tincture of orange peel (1 fl oz), syrup (7 fl oz)
  • doseL 1 fl drachm
  • used in the preparations of: confection sulphuris

Syrup of Orange Flower / Syrupus Aurantii Floris [13]

  • orange-flower water (8 fl oz), refined sugar (3 lbs), distilled water (16 fl oz, or as needed)
  • dose: 1 fl drachm

Tincture of Orange Peel / Tinctura Aurantii [14]

  • bitter-orange peel, cut small and bruied (2 oz), proof spirit (1 pint)
  • dose: 1-2 fl drachms
  • used in preparations of: Mistura Ferri Aromatica, Syrupus Aurantii, Tinctura Quiniae

Compound Tincture of Cinchona / Tinctura Cinchonae Composita[15]

  • pale cinchona bark, in moderately fine powder (2 oz), bitter-orange peel, cut small and bruised (1 oz), serpentary root, bruised (1/2 oz), saffron (60 grains), cochineal, in powder (30 grains), proof spirit (1 pint)
  • dose: ½-2 fl drachm

Compound Tincture of Gentian / Tinctura Gentianae composita [16]

  • Gentian root, cut small and bruised (1 ½ oz), bitter-orange peel, cut small and bruised (3/4 oz), cardamom seeds, freed from the pericarps and bruised (1/4 oz), proof spirit (1 pint)
  • dose: ½-2 fl drachms

Tincture of Quinia / Tincture Quiniae[17]

  • sulphate of quinia (160 grains), tincture of orange peel (1 pint)
  • dose: ½-2 fl drachms

Orange Wine / Vinum Aurantii [18]

  • “Wine made in Britain, by the fresh fermentation of a saccharine solution to which the fresh peel of the bitter orange has been added… A vinous liquid, having a golden sherry colour, and a taste and aroma derived from the bitter orange peel.”
  • Used in the preparations of: Vinum Ferri Citras, Vinum Quiniae

Wine of Citrate of Iron / Vinum Ferri Citratis[19]

  • citrate of iron and ammonia (160 grains), orange wine (1 pint)
  • dose: 1-4 fl drachms

Wine of Quinia / Vinum Quiniae [20]

  • sulphate of quinia (20 grains), citric acid (30 grains), orange wine (1 pint)
  • dose: ½-1 fl oz

A Compendium of Domestic Medicine, 1865

I’ve included Orange Flower Water in these remedies

Remedies Containing or to be used with Orange

  • Acid, Citric: syrup of orange-peel included in “Saline Mixture”[21]
  • Acid, Nitric, Diluted: syrup of orange-peel included in draught used to treat heartburn. Syrup of orange-peel is also included in “Nitric Acid Draught” used to treat typhoid fevers[22]
  • Aromatic Confection: syrup of orange-peel included in “Cordial Draught for Relaxed Bowles” [23]
  • Arrow-root: when making a jelly from arrow-root, orange juice may be added, but it is more used in the flavouring of the remedy, not medicinally necessary.[24]
  • Bark, Peruvian: syrup of orange-peel is used in a draught that is administered in cases of ague “when the sulphate of quinine has failed”[25]
  • Bark, Canella: the rind of two Seville oranges is used in the recipe for usquebaugh (whisky)[26]
  • Bismuth, White: orange-flower water included in “Gastrodynia with Flatulence” draught recommended by Dr. Copland[27]
  • Carrageen, or Irish Moss: a decoction of the moss made with water and flavoured with Seville orange juice (among other options) can be given to consumptive patients throughout the day, when needed, to provide nourishment.[28]
  • Glycerine: orange-flower water (or rose water, or elder flower water) used in a mixture that can be applied to the skin to treat chapping, roughness, sun burn, dandriff, and other skin irritations.[29]
  • Hartshorn Shavings: “it forms, when united with orange-juice, sugar, and a little wine, a good article of diet for the sick and convalescent”[30]
  • Infusions, Concentrated of cloves, calumbo, cascarilla, chamomile, gentian, orange peel, quassia, rhubarb, roses, and senna: used often in medicine chests as they can be diluted to form infusions. This allows for large doses to be provided in smaller amounts.[31]
  • Kreosote, or Creasote: “Creasote Mixture” contains syrup of orange-peel, and orange flower water.[32]
  • Nitre: syrup of orange-peel used in a draught to administer nitre [33]
  • Oil of Almonds: orange-flower water included in a mixture used to combating a “tickling and irritating cough”[34]
  • Quinine, Sulphate of: “The compound tincture of quinine, which is a combination of Seville orange-peel and quinine…” Quinine can also be used in the treatment of neuralgic odontalgia (headache caused by toothache) when combined with a tincture of orange-peel and Hoffman’s ether[35]
  • Senna Leaves: tincture of orange-peel used in a mixture to be given to children. Senna on its own is has a “nauseous taste”[36]
  • Spirit of Mindererus: syrup of orange-peel is included in “Diaphoretic Draught”[37]
  • Water, Orange Flower: “This water is one of the most agreeable of flavours for medicinal preparations. Its sedative effects, which are not generally known in this country, is especially useful in nervous affections. A tablespoon will occasionally allay nervous irritability and produce refreshing sleep.”[38]

Diseases Treated with Orange

General Diseases

  • Cough: orange flower water is included in a mixture for “Sever Coughs of Children of Four Years of Age”[39]
  • Gout: Infusion of orange-peel included in a mixture recommended by Dr. Copland, to treat gout that is in early stages, resulting in “inflammatory excitement.”[40]
  • Putrid Sore Throat: orange-flower water included in a gargle[41]
  • Scurvy: “beverages strongly impregnated with the juice of lemons and oranges, or the effervescing saline draughts, are very beneficial.”[42]
  • Sickness: an infusion of orange-peel can be used to treat sickness that “proceeds from a chronic debility of the stomach”[43]
  • Typhus Fever: drinks given to patients should be cold, and slightly acidulated with either orange or lemon juice[44]

Medical Articles Containing Orange

  • Compound Infusion of Orange Peel: orange-peel, dried, [45]
  • Decoction of Senna with Tamarinds: syrup or orange-peel is added to the mixture once strained[46]
  • Gout Tincture: Seville orange-peel[47]

Prescriptions Containing Orange


  • Antacid Powder for Wet-Nurses: powdered orange-peel “one of these powders may be given to wet-nurses when their children are troubled with gripe”[48]
  • Antacid Draught (Another): tincture of orange-peel[49]
  • Antacid Draught (Another): tincture of orange-peel[50]
  • Chronic Gout: tincture of orange-peel[51]
  • Aperient Oil Draught: syrup of orange-peel[52]


  • Anti-Asthmatic Draught: syrup of orange-peel[53]


  • Astringent Draught (Another): syrup of orange-peel[54]
  • Astringent Mixture: syrup of orange-peel[55]
  • Stimulating Astringent Mixture syrup of orange-peel[56]


  • Demulcent Mixture (Another): orange flower water[57]


  • Diuretic Draught: syrup of orange-peel[58]


  • Cordial and Diaphoretic Mixture: syrup of orange-peel[59]


  • Ferruginous Mineral Water: orange flower water, and syrup or orange-peel “may be taken with advantage in green sickness, fluor albus, and dyspepsia”[60]

Narcotics and Anodynes

  • Compound Sedative Syrup: syrup of orange peel[61]
  • Sedative Mixture: syrup of orange peel[62]


  • Refrigerant Draught: syrup of orange peel[63]


  • Stimulant Mixture (Another): syrup if orange peel[64]


  • Tonic Mixture: syrup of orange peel[65]
  • Tonic Mixture (Another): tincture of orange peel[66]

Cookery for the Sick that includes Orange

  • Imperial Drink: boiling water is added to cream of tartar, lemon and orange chips, and sugar-candy. “Use for a common drink when feverish, or when urine is scanty.”[67]
  • Orgeat: orange flower water is combined with almonds, bitter almond, milk, water, sugar, and capillaire. “This is an excellent drink for those who have a tender chest; and in gout it is highly useful; and, with the addition of half an ounce of gum Arabic, has been found to allay the painfulness of the attendant heat.[68]
  • Orangeade or Lemonade: the juice of the fruits combined with sugar (as a syrup), and water (which has been infused with peel).[69]


  1. General Medical Council of Great Britain, British Pharmacopeia, (London: Spottiswoode & Co.,1867), 51
  2. GMCGB, 51
  3. GMCGB, 42
  4. GMCGB, 42
  5. GMCGB, 89
  6. GMCGB, 157
  7. GMCGB, 157-58
  8. GMCGB, 161
  9. GMCGB, 210
  10. GMCGB, 211
  11. GMCGB, 295
  12. GMCGB, 309
  13. GMCGB, 309
  14. GMCGB, 320
  15. GMCGB, 326-27
  16. GMCGB, 332
  17. GMCGB, 339
  18. GMCGB, 367
  19. GMCGB, 368
  20. GMCGB, 369
  21. Savory, John. A Compendium of Domestic Medicine (London: John Churchill and Sons, 1865), 1.
  22. Savory, 6
  23. Savory, 21
  24. Savory, 22
  25. Savory, 27
  26. Savory, 28
  27. Savory, 32
  28. Savory, 41
  29. Savory, 71
  30. Savory, 89
  31. Savory, 84
  32. Savory, 93
  33. Savory, 105
  34. Savory, 105
  35. Savory, 123
  36. Savory, 133
  37. Savory, 140
  38. Savory, 168
  39. Savory, 119
  40. Savory, 234
  41. Savory, 250
  42. Savory, 254
  43. Savory, 255
  44. Savory, 258
  45. Savory, 289
  46. Savory, 293
  47. Savory, 300
  48. Savory, 305
  49. Savory, 306
  50. Savory, 307
  51. Savory, 308
  52. Savory, 312
  53. Savory, 316
  54. Savory, 318
  55. Savory, 319
  56. Savory, 319
  57. Savory, 323
  58. Savory, 324
  59. Savory, 327
  60. Savory, 328
  61. Savory, 342
  62. Savory, 342
  63. Savory, 333
  64. Savory, 344
  65. Savory, 334
  66. Savory, 334
  67. Savory, 336
  68. Savory, 346
  69. Savory, 346

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