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Dedicated to the distinguished scientist

Dr. A. P. J. Adbul Kalam who revived the glory of Indian medicinal and aromatic plants in the Rashtrapati Bhawan.

Guiding Factors

First of all, let me acknowledge with gratitude the contribution of the following reference works which synchronised the synonyms and medicinal properties of Indian medicinal plants:

  • A Catalogue of Indian Synonyms of the Medicinal Plants of India by Moodeen Sheriff (1869). (The first exhaustive compilation of synonyms of Indian medicinal plants in 12 regional languages, besides Latin and English).
  • Indian Medicinal Plants by Lt. Col. K.R. Kirtikar and Major B.D. Basu (1918).
  • Glossary of Indian Medicinal Plants by Col. Sir Ram Nath Chopra et al. (CSIR, 1956).
  • Useful Plants of India (CSIR, 1986; based on The Wealth of India series, Vol. I 1948, Vol. XI 1976).
  • Dictionary of Indian Medicinal Plants by Akhtar Husain et al. (CIMAP, 1992).

Based on this legacy, Indian Medicinal Plants. An Illustrated Dictionary is aimed at bringing out an updated Active Study Dictionary of plant sources of Indian medicine, as a companion volume of my earlier book Encyclopedia of Indian Medicinal Plants/Indian Herbal Remedies, published by Springer.

Ayurvedic synonyms have been selected from the following sources:

  • The Ayurvedic Pharmacopoeia of India (Vol. I to IV).
  • Standard Nomenclature of Ayurvedic Medicinal Plants (CCRAS, 1999).
  • Medicinal Plants used in Ayurveda (Rashtriya Ayurveda Vidyapeeth/ National Academy of Ayurveda, 1998).
  • Plants of Sharangadhara Samhita by Prof. K.C. Chunekar and Dr. K. Pondel (National Academy of Ayurveda, 1999).
  • Plants ofBhava Prakash by Prof. K.C. Chunekar and Dr. N.P. Hota (National Academy of Ayurveda, 1998).
  • Central Council for Research in Ayurveda and Siddha (CCRAS). Published literature.
  • Dravyagun Vigyaan, Vol. II (Hindi) by Dr. Priyavrata Sharma (1991). Unani synonyms have been selected from the following sources:
  • The National Formulary of Unani Medicine.
  • Central Council for Research in Unani Medicine (CCRUM). Published literature.
  • Unani Dravyagunaadarsh (Hindi) by Daljit Singh (Ayurvedic and Tibbi Academy, Uttar Pradesh, Lucknow, 1974).

Siddha/Tamil synonyms have been selected from the following sources:

  • Formulary of Siddha Medicine. (Indian Medical Practitioners' Cooperative Pharmacy and Store Ltd., IMPCOPS, Chennai).
  • The Wealth of India (Vol. II to XI).
  • Dictionary of Indian Medicinal Plants (CIMAP).
  • The Ayurvedic Pharmacopoeia of India (Vol. I to IV).
  • Central Council for Research in Ayurveda and Siddha (CCRAS). Published literature.

The medicinal plants shortlisted by the National Academy of Ayurveda and the department of Indian Systems of Medicine (AYUSH) have been included in the book.

Key applications of medicinal plants are based on the following sources:

  • German Commission E monographs.
  • ESCOP monographs.
  • WHO monographs.
  • Indian Herbal Pharmacopoeia.
  • The Ayurvedic Pharmacopoeia of India (Vol. I to IV) for traditionally recognised applications.

Guiding Factors IX

  • The British Herbal Pharmacopoeia.
  • The British Herbal Compendium.
  • Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database, 2007.

For further study, all major findings and leads, including references to research documents and journals, can be reached through the following books (in sequence):

  • The Wealth of India First Supplement Series (Vol. I to V).
  • The Wealth of India original series (Vol. II to XI and revised Vol. 1 to 3).
  • Compendium of Indian Medicinal Plants (Vol. I to V, CDRI).
  • Potter's New Cyclopaedia of Botanical Drugs and Preparations (1998 edn).
  • Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database, 2007.
  • PDRfor Herbal Medicines, 2004.
  • The Treatise on Indian Medicinal Plants (Vol. I to VI).
  • Additional sources, as cited at appropriate places.

Dosage of crude herbs is based on the recommendations of The Ayurvedic Pharmacopoeia ofIndia (Vol. I to IV) and Standard Nomenclature ofAyurvedic Medicinal Plants (CCRAS).

Roman spellings of Ayurvedic synonyms, introduced for the first time by Rashtriya Ayurveda Vidyapeeth (National Academy of Ayurveda), New Delhi-110 026, have been followed. Asiatic Society's markings are now obsolete. The text has been formatted following the style-manual of The Wealth of India series of CSIR.

Detailed references of research journals are beyond the purview of this project. The text is based on authentic treatises which are the outcome of scientific screening and critical evaluation by eminent scholars. As I have already indicated, readers, if they so desire, can always refer back to a particular research paper cited in the original source. I did not follow the trend of enumerating research papers which were not actually consulted by me. Researchers should consult the Database on Medicinal Plants used in Ayurveda series (CCRAS) and Reviews on Indian Medicinal Plants series (ICMR) for detailed bibliography.

All Indian common names have been spelled according to their actual pronunciation. The way was shown by the National Academy of Ayurveda by introducing aa in the spellings. In The Review of Natural Products (Facts and Comparisons) 2005 edition., Khat, Chaat, Chat, qaad, jaad and Miraa have been included among the common names of Catha edulis, while the common name of Gymnema sylvestre is spelled as Gurmar instead of Gurmaar. Perhaps the actual pronunciation was not known to the editors. In India, O is pronounced in a specific ascent, as in Om, that is the reason uu is used instead of oo. Similarly, Sanskrit synonyms end with a, that is why aa is used for facilitating proper pronunciation. These changes have been included so that Indian names are pronounced correctly.

Afew words of gratitude. Dr. V.K. Agarwal Ph. D. (Medicinal Chemistry), who was the senior editor (chemistry and pharmacology) of The Wealth of India series for 28 years, reviewed the entire text. He remained closely associated with all my projects and deserves much more than a few formal words of thanks. Sarita Joshi, my research associate, bore the brunt of the workload throughout the difficult phases of the project. For this she also deserves a special mention.

Finally, I would like to add that a concerted effort has been made in the book to rationalise the therapeutic coverage of Indian medicinal plants as part of my commitment to scientific herbalism.

C.P. Khare Society for New Age Herbals B-l/211, Janak Puri, New Delhi-110 058

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