Update: 2006-08-06 01:53 PM -0700


Medicinal Plants of Myanmar

Family: Liliaceae

compiled by U Kyaw Tun, U Pe Than, and staff of TIL. Not for sale.

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Family: Liliaceae 2 entries
• Fritillaria roylei  • {ma.chis} /  {ma.chis.u.} : mis-spelled as "F. reylei" in MMPDB-2005
• Urginea indica • {pa.deing:krak-thwun}

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Fritillaria roylei 

UKT: mis-spelled as "F. reylei" in MMPDB-2005

Family: Liliaceae.

Burmese-Myanmar transcript names:
• Agri.Dept.2000 43-1126:   {ma.chis}, or {ma.chis.u.}
• FAO : NL
• Lè-seik-shin 379:
• Nagathein 2-387: {ma.chis} or {ma.chis.u.}
• UHM 26: Ma-chit- u

Myanmar-Script Spelling:
• Official Myanmar Dictionaries : NL (not listed)



English common name used in Myanmar :
• Agri.Dept.2000 43-1126: NG (not given)
• FAO : NL
• Lè-seik-shin 379:
• Nagathein 2-387: NG
• UHM 26: NG

Picture :
• Leader from Nagathein 2-388


Plant identification characters :

• A bulbous herb with opposite or 3-6 whorled leaves, suberect, 2 - 4 by ¼ - 1½ in., flowers 1½ - 2 in. long, campanulate, yellow green, tessollated with dull purple segments. ½ - ¾ in. broad, stamens half the length of the perianth. Capsule obovoid, obtusely angled. -- UHM


Distribution in Myanmar:

• Kachin States Hills. -- UHM


Part used and uses :

• Bulbs - Life prolonger, tuberculosis and asthma. -- UHM


Constituents :

• 1. Alkaloid peimine (22). 2. Alkaloid propeimine (23). 3. Four new alkaloids:- Peimisine, Peimiphine, Peimidine, Peimitidime.  (24). 4. A Sterol (25) -- UHM

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Urginea indica 

Urginea scilla (Steinheil); Scilla maritima (Linn.),
Urginea indica  -- www.botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/s/squill86.html

Family: Liliaceae.

Burmese-Myanmar transcript names:
• Agri.Dept.2000 34-0899: {pa.deing:krak-thwun}
• FAO : NL
• Lè-seik-shin : NL
• Nagathein : NL
• UHM 43: Padaing-kyet-thun


Myanmar-Script Spelling :
Official Myanmar Dictionaries : NL

UKT: Scilla, the classical name of the plant, is derived from a Greek word meaning to excite or disturb, as an emetic does the stomach. Scilla maritima was the name given by Linnaeus, but this was changed to Urginea, in allusion to the Algerian tribe Ben Urgin, near Boma, where Steinheil in 1834 examined this plant, removing it from the genus Scilla. The main difference between the genera is that the genus Urginea has flat, discoid seeds, while in Scilla proper they are triquetrous (threeangled, with three concave faces). Baker named it Urginea maritima, but it now retains Scilla as its specific name.-- www.botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/s/squill86.html


English common name used in Myanmar :
• Agri.Dept.2000 34-0899: Indian squill
• FAO : NL
• Lè-seik-shin : NL
• Nagathein : NL
• UHM 43: Squills, Sea Onions, White squills.

English common name used elsewhere :
• Maritime Squill. Scilla maritima (Linn.). Urginea maritima. Urginea indica. White Squill. Red Squill. -- www.botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/s/squill86.html

• Leader graphic of red squill (Urginea maratima printed as Urginea Scilla) on right from: www.botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/s/squill86.html . Click on graphic to enlarge.


Plant identification characters

• A perennial herb whose underground portion consists of a pear shaped, tunicated bulb, bearing fibrous roots from its base and whose aerial parts consist of succulent stem bearing a dense raceme of white flowers, leaves, in rosettes leance-ovate, deep green, fruit an oblong 3-1 obed capsule producing each cell 6 purplish brown flattened seeds. -- UHM

• It is a perennial plant with fibrous roots proceeding from the base of a large, tunicated, nearly globular bulb, 4 to 6 inches long, the outer scales of which are thin and papery, red or orange-brown in colour. The bulb, which is usually only half immersed in the sand, sends forth several long, lanceolate, pointed, somewhat undulated, shining, dark-green leaves, when fully grown 2 feet long. From the middle of the leaves, a round, smooth, succulent flower-stem rises, from 1 to 3 feet high, terminating in a long, close spike of whitish flowers, which stand on purplish peduncles, at the base of each of which is a narrow, twisted, deciduous floral leaf or bract. The flowers are in bloom in April and May and are followed by oblong capsules.
   It is a very variable plant, the bulb differing greatly in size and colour, and the leaves of the flower presenting similar varieties, which has led to the formation of several species, about twenty-five species having been described. Two varieties of squill, termed respectively white and red, are distinguished by druggists. In the first named, the bulb scales are whitish or yellowish in colour, whereas the red species has deep, reddish brown outer scales and yellowish white inner scales, covered with a pinkish epidermis, intermediate forms also occurring. No essential difference exists in the medicinal properties of the two kinds.-- www.botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/s/squill86.html


Distribution in Myanmar:

• Kachin States, Chin Hills. -- UHM

UKT: The Squill is found in dry, sandy places, especially the seacoast in most of the Mediterranean districts, being abundant in southern Spain, where it is by no means confined to the coast, and is found in Portugal, Morocco, Algeria, Corsica, southern France, Italy, Malta, Dalmatia, Greece, Syria and Asia Minor. In Sicily, where it grows most abundantly, it ascends to an elevation of 3,000 feet. Its range also includes the Canary Islands and the Cape of Good Hope. It is often grown under fig trees in the Italian Riviera, and is grown in many botanical gardens, having first been recorded as cultivated in England in 1648, in the Oxford Botanic Gardens. -- www.botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/s/squill86.html

Part used and uses:

• The cut and dried fleshy inner scale of the bulb. Used as nauseating expectorant, cardiac stimulant and diuretic. -- UHM


Ethnobotany (Worldwide use):

• There are several bulbs used in place of the official Squill:
   Indian Squill consists of the younger bulbs of Urginea indica (Knuth), or of Scilla indica (Baker), which is also known as Ledebouria hyacinthina (Roth.).
   U. indica, Knuth (S. indica, Roxb.) is a widely diffused plant occurring in northern India, Abyssinia, Nubia and Senegambia. It is known by the same Arabic and Persian names as U. scilla and its bulbs are used for similar purposes, but are considered to have no action when old and large. The bulbs consist of whitish, fleshy coats or scales, which enclose each other completely. They resemble common onions in shape.
   S. indica, Baker (L. hyacinthina, Roth.), a native of India and Abyssinia, has a bulb often confused in the Indian bazaars with the preceding, but easily distinguished when entire by being scaly, not tunicated, its creamcoloured scales overlapping one another. The bulbs are about the size and shape of a small pear, somewhat smaller than those of U. indica. It is considered a better representative of the European Squill.
   The bulbs of both species have a nauseous odour and a bitter acrid taste. They are collected soon after the plants have flowered, divested of their dry, outer, membraneous coats, cut into slices and dried.
   The chief constituents in each case are bitter principles, similar to the glucosidal substances found in ordinary Squill, and needle shaped crystals of calcium oxalate are also present.
   The drug possesses stimulant, expectorant and diuretic principles, and is official in the India and Colonial Addendum for use in India and the Eastern Colonies as an equivalent of ordinary Squill.
   U. altissima, Baker (Ornithogalum altissimum, Linn.), a South African species very closely related to the common Squill, has apparently the same properties.
   The bulb of S. Peruviana (Linn.) has also been used and exported as a substitute for Squill.
   Drimia ciliaris (Jacq.), native of the Cape of Good Hope, much resembles the official Squill, but has a juice so irritating if it comes into contact with the skin, that it was called by the Dutch colonists Jeukbol, i.e. Itch-bulb. It is used medicinally as an emetic, expectorant and diuretic.
   Crinum asiaticum, var. toxicarium (Hubert), is a large plant with handsome white flowers and showy leaves, cultivated in Indian gardens and growing wild in low, humid spots in various parts of India and on the coast of Ceylon. The bulb was admitted in 1868 to the Pharmacopoeia of India as a valuable emetic, but is not widely used.
   The European Squills belonging to the genus Scilla possess in a milder form the same active principle, and some of the species are deleterious, if not absolutely dangerous.
   The bulbs of S. lilio-hyacinthus are used as a purgative by the inhabitants of the Pyrenees. -- www.botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/s/squill86.html



• 1. Crystalline glycoside -- Scillaren A. 2. Amorphous glycoside - Scillaren B. 3. Scillarennase. (an enzyme) 4. Mucilage. sinistrin, cal. oxalate, volatile oil & sugar. (3) -- UHM

• The chemical constituents of Squill are imperfectly known. Merck, in 1879, separated the three bitter glucosidal substances Scillitoxin, Scillipicrin and Scillin. The first two are amorphous and act upon the heart, the former being the more active; Scillin is crystalline and causes numbness and vomiting. Other constituents are mucilaginous and saccharine matter, including a peculiar mucilaginous carbohydrate named Sinistrin, an Inulin-like substance, which yields Laevulose on being boiled with dilute acid. The name Sinistrin (in 1834, first proposed by Macquart for Inulin) has also been applied to a mucilaginous matter extracted from barley, but it remains to be proved that the latter is identical with the Sinistrin of Squill. Calcium oxalate is also present, in bundles of long, acicular crystals, which easily penetrate the skin when the bulbs are handled, and causes intense irritation, sometimes eruption, if a piece of fresh Squill is rubbed on the skin.
   The toxicity of Squills has more recently been ascribed to a single, bitter, non-nitrogenous glucoside, to which the name Scillitinis given, and which is the active diuretic and expectorant principle.
   The bulbs also yield when distilled in a current of steam, a slightly coloured liquid oil of unpleasant odour.
   The chemistry of Squills cannot yet be regarded as fully worked out, since most of the glucosides described have only been prepared in an amorphous condition of uncertain chemical identity.-- www.botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/s/squill86.html

Contents of this page

Entry format: Botanical name / Family / Ref. Burmese-Myanmar transcripts (• Agri.Dept.2000 : • FAO : • Lè-seik-shin : • KS-TMN: • Nagathein : • UHM :/ Myanmar-Script Spelling Official Myanmar Dictionaries : - TravPo-M-Dict - Myan-Engl-Dict - Myan-Ortho / Hindi / Sanskrit / English common name used in Myanmar / Picture / Plant identification characters / Distribution in Myanmar / Part used and uses / Constituents /
End of TIL file