Contents: Preface. Part I: Introduction. 1. India: A site of learning. 2. Ayurveda: Ancient sciences of life. 3. Medicinal plants: A scenario. 4.The Present work. 5. The state of Maharashtra. Part II: Herbal Materia Medica of Maharashtra: Enumeration. Bibliography. Index.
In primitive human societies, the process of acquiring knowledge about plants and medicinal utility was initiated concomitantly. Later both diverged from each other. The former led to the foundation of plant science and latter to medicine. Medicine developed from the desire and effort to heal human ailments and as such, origin of medicine is natural and traditional. Knowledge of medicine gradually developed in some organized systems of medicine worldwide. These systems are based on their own theories, principles and practices. Indian medicinal system, Ayurveda, is a proud heritage of India. Although so, the treasure of Ayurveda has passed through the vicissitudes of time and various reigns.
The present book is an attempt to collate information on herbs, generally mentioned in Ayurvedic literature and those found in the Maharashtra. Their chemical constituents, exact botanical identity, local plant names, parts used, phenology, besides properties and uses of drugs. It will be useful to the students, teachers, research workers in the faculty of medicine and science, apart from pharmaceutical industries and enthusiasts. About 450 plant species have been carefully presented to help enhance the science of Ayurveda in particular.