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Monkshood flowers (Aconitum napellus)

Monkshood flowers (Aconitum napellus)

B640/0972

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Credit

JOHN STILES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY JOHN STILES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Monkshood flowers (Aconitum napellus). This plant is poisonous as it contains the neurotoxic chemical aconitine. Eating or even touching large quantities of the plant can cause death by respiratory arrest. In the past the plant was used extensively in herbal medicines and magic potions, with alleged properties ranging from local anaesthetic to the repulsion of werewolves. It is found in upland areas throughout the northern hemisphere.

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