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JESUITICA: Jesuit bark better than bite

cinchona_01.jpgJesuit bark (or Pulvis Patrum) was the historical name for quinine, the most celebrated remedy for malaria. Taken from the cinchona tree, its ability to bring down fever had been discovered by the Peruvian Indians, and it was Jesuits working in Peru who brought it to Europe. It was through their recommendation of its use that the wife of the Spanish viceroy in Lima, Peru, was cured of malaria in 1630, and this success greatly increased the renown of this remedy.