This is seen as a curious evidence of Greek trade with Java in a time earlier than that of Theophrastus. In India, the spice came to be called kabab chini, that is, "Chinese cubeb", possibly because the Chinese had a hand in its trade, but more likely because it was an important item in the trade with China. In China this pepper was called both vilenga, and vidanga, the cognate Sanskrit word. Tang physicians administered it to restore appetite, cure "demon vapors", darken the hair, and perfume the body.
However, there is no evidence showing that cubeb was used as a condiment in China. Cubeb was introduced to Arabic cuisine around the 10th century.
Ludovico Maria Sinistrari , a Catholic priest who wrote about methods of exorcism in the late 17th century, includes cubeb as an ingredient in an incense to ward off incubus. After the prohibition of sale, culinary use of cubeb decreased dramatically in Europe, and only its medicinal application continued to the 19th century.
In the early 20th century, cubeb was regularly shipped from Indonesia to Europe and the United States. It is a pale green or blue-yellow viscous liquid with a warm woody, slightly camphoraceous odor.
It may be prepared from cubebene, or from the pulp left after the distillation of the oil. The dose of the fruit is 30 to 60 grains , and the British Pharmacopoeia contains a tincture with a dose of 4 to 1 dram. Charaka and Sushruta prescribe a cubeb paste as a mouthwash, and the use of dried cubebs internally for oral and dental diseases, loss of voice, halitosis , fevers, and cough.
Due to this attributed property, cubeb was called "Habb-ul-Uruus". Then he mixed cunningly, after having pounded and sieved them; he added pure honey until the whole became a thick paste; then he mingled five grains of musk and an ounce of pounded fish roe with the rest.
Finally he added a little concentrated rose-water and put all in the bowl. According to the story, the merchant did get the child he desired after following these instructions. Other Arab authors wrote that cubeb rendered the breath fragrant, cured affections of the bladder, and that eating it "enhances the delight of coitus".
The modern use of cubeb in England as a drug dates from The most important therapeutic application of this drug, however, was in treating gonorrhea , where its antiseptic action was of much value. They are given in all stages of gonorrhea ". The drug exhibited the typical actions of a volatile oil, but exerted some of these to an exceptional degree. Its administration caused the appearance in the urine of a salt of cubebic acid which was precipitated by heat or nitric acid , and was therefore liable to be mistaken for albumin , when these two most common tests for the occurrence of albuminuria were applied.
It was ground as a seasoning for meat or used in sauces. Cubeb reached Africa by way of the Arabs. In Moroccan cuisine , cubeb is used in savory dishes and in pastries like markouts, little diamonds of semolina with honey and dates. Cigarettes and spirits[ edit ] A Victorian advertisement for Dr.
Perrin's Medicated Cubeb Cigarettes Cubeb was frequently used in the form of cigarettes for asthma , chronic pharyngitis and hay fever. In cubeb oil was included in the list of ingredients found in cigarettes , published by the Tobacco Prevention and Control Branch of North Carolina 's Department of Health and Human Services. The brand was launched in , but its maker claims that it is based on a secret recipe dating to Pertsovka , a dark brown Russian pepper vodka with a burning taste, is prepared from infusion of cubeb and capsicum peppers.
Cubeb is sometimes used to adulterate the essential oil of Patchouli , which requires caution for Patchouli users. In , Shiseido , a well-known Japanese cosmetics company, patented a line of anti-aging products containing formulas made from several herbs, including cubeb.