Abanus. Ebony. Dalbergia melanoxylon Guill. & Perr.

A deciduous tree. Stem used as fumigation ingredient, and in treating joints and muscles affections.

Abray. Dura flakes

Thin white flakes made out of fermented porridge of white varieties of dura specially feterita. Various herbs including black cumin, shamar, 'aradeb and hilba are added. The product soaked in water and drunk sweetened without straining as a beverage during Ramadan (Moslem fasting month), and as food.

Abu Ajoura and Abu Qallout.  Leucas martinicensis (Jacq.)

Erect annual herb. Whole plant used thelmintic, and in treating jaundice.

Abu Al-Iffain and Al-Lir.  Momordica balsamina L.

A herbaceous climber. Fruit, leaves: ued as laxative, purgative, and anti-spasmodic.

Abu Al-Lissaiq.  Commicarpus africanus (Lour.) Gulf.

A glabrous herb. Root used in treating jaundice.

Abu Aweisha.  Unidentified taxonomic name

A root obtained in Talodi in Kordofan.

Abu-Jalajil; Um-Jalajil; Irq Al-Aqrab; Abu-Jiljil; Jaljal; Jaljil, and Abu Jalajil. 'Scorpion root'. Aristolochia bracteolata L.; Andrachne aspera Spreng., and Aristolocheata bracteata.

Shrub or tree. Root and whole plant used as anti-dote against scropion bites. It is worn or used for cautery after charring; or powdered and swallowed in severe scorpion bites. Jalijl means jingle bells, or seeds of senna in Sudanese vernacular. Used also for treating infections of the breasts, abdominal disorders as laxative, purgative, and anthelminthic.

Abu Lebru.  Boerhavia plumbaginaceae Cav. and Commicarpus plumbagineus (Cav.)Standley.

Solution injected rectally through a perforated horn of a sheep. Used in treating gonorrhoea.

Abu Marfa'in; Shajar al-Marfa'in, and Irq Shajar al-Marfa'in, 'Snake root', 'hyena root'.  Randia nilotica Stapf and Catunaregam nilotica (Stapf) Tirv.

Fruits, root and bark.

Abu Qawi.  Gardenia ternifolia Schum. & Thonn.

A glabrous shrub. Fruit, root: used in treating Bilharzia, jaundice, and enlarged spleen.

Abu Qutna.  Lasiosiphon kraussianus (Meisn.) Burtt-Kavy; Gnidia kraussiana, and Lasiosiphon krausii (Meisn.)

Pubescent herb. Whole plant and root used as a poultice, in treating leprosy, and abdominal disorders.

Abu Roru.  Stylochiton grandis N. E. Br.

An erect annual herb. Root used as an anthelmintic.

Abu Shutour and Umm Mashtour.  Kegelia africana (L.)

A large Savanna tree. Bark used in treating joints affections, abdominal disorders, and dysentery.

Abu Shuwaika and Haj Al-Moya.  Hygrophilia auriculata (Schumach.)

An erect spiny herb. Whole plant used as poultice, diuretic, in treating jaundice, joints affections, and swellings.

Abu Sinaina.  Acacia polyacantha Willd.

A local lowland tree. Bark used in treating jaundice, and bilharzia.

Abu Surug.  Prosopis africana (Guill. & Perr.) Taub. and Prosopis oblongata Benth.

A local wild tree. Pods, bark and wood used in boat building, in tanning, as treatment for sepsis and a fish poison.

Abu Tamr Ahmar.  Unidentified taxonomic name.

A variety of date tree. Root reduced to a pulp and packed in small leather charm, or stuffed in the cut ends of gazelle horns. Used as a tonic.

Abu Tamra and Abu Tamr.  Maerua oblongifolia (Forssk.)A.Rich.

Root used.

Abu Tiffa and Kashaw Kashaw.  Leonotis nepetifolia (L.)

A pubescent herb. Fruit used as poultice, anti-spasmodic, and in treating swellings.

Abu Zafaya. "Snake root". Unidentified taxonomic name.

Used as an anti-dote for snake bites.

Acetone. Dimethyl ketone.

A colourless inflammable liquid with a pleasant smell usually used as a nail varnish. It is inhaled by vagrant kids for kicks.

Adas. Lentil. Lens esculenta Moench; Lens esculenta, and Lens culinaris Medic.

Used as food and in water purification.

Adas Sudani and Lubia Adas. Pigeon pea; Pigeonpeas. Cajanus indicus Spreng. and Cajanus cajan (L.)Millsp.

Seeds used for food.

Adm Samak. Fish vertibra.

Fertility symbol, and ritual item.

Afi Namasin.  Unidentified taxonomic name.

Stem used in Al-Liri of Southern Kordofan.

Afna and Gadda. Asafoetida; Asafetida; Assafetida. Ferula foetida (Bunge)Regel.

Mass mixed with butter and smeared on lips of children with colic, or wrapped in cloth as anti-sterility. It is a gum resin obtained from the root latex of Ferula species (Persian aza: mastic, and Latin fetida: stinking), imported from Egypt. Used in treating swellings, carious teeth, flatulence and colic,  gonorrhoea, abortion, guinea worm, abdominal disorders, as anti-sterility agent, and toothache analgesic.

Afsa. Gall nuts.

Imported from India, Egypt, and Java. Used as toothache analgesic, in treating dabas, diarrhoea, and carious teeth and as dehydrant to the vaginal canal (hence tightening).

Afyoun. Opium. Papaver sommniferum L.

Seeds; capsule; powder; mass used as aphrodisiac, and narcotic.

Ain Al-Dik; Ain Al-Ifrit; Habbat Al-Ain; Habbat Al-Arus, and Yagomo (Golo). Bead tree; crab's eye; wild liquorice. Abrus precatorius L. and Glycine abrus L. (synonym).

A local wild shrub. Seeds; root; leaves used. It is recognized as a poisonous item. It is used in treatment of sterility, inflammation of the eye, headache, and as a laxative, purgative, anti-cough, emetic, demulcent, and as an agent in water purification.

Ain Al-Marfa'in. Wolf's eyeball.

Used in the treating inflammation of the eye.

Ajjour and Faqqous Al-Marfa'in.  Cucumis metuliferus Naud

A prickly weed. Fruit used to treat abdominal disorders.

Al-Arayib.  Unidentified taxonomic name.

Camel fodder. Whole plant used to feed camels in long journies to make them more tolerant to water starvation, and hence recognized as tonic.

Al-Bighail.  Blepharis linariifolia Pers.

A local pubescent annual herb. Whole plant used as tonics, and treatment of abdominal disorders and Bilharzia.

Al-Gani Ma-Gani.  Unidentified taxonomic name.

Plant introduced by Nigerians. Root used in managing the evil eye, as a repellant of evil spirits, and as a fumigation ingredient.

Al-Rowand and Khashab Al-Rowand. Rhubarb. Rheum officinalis L. and Rheum officinale Baill.

Plant imported from India and North Africa. Rhizome (crushed in cold water). Used in treating chest complaints, inflammation, diarrhoea, as contraceptive, tonic, and emmenogogue.

Alali; 'Irq Alali, and Irq al-Sihir. `King of roots'. Securidaca longepedunculata Fresen.

A wild local glabrous branched spiny shrub or small tree. Used whole, fruits, root (worn, sniffed or burnt) or stem for treating fungal infection, headache, joint pain, sunstroke, fever, as anti dote for snake bites, anthelmintic, an ingredient for water purification and fumigation.

Ananas. Pineapple. Ananas comosus Merr.

Fruit; stem used for food, substrate alcohol beverages.

Anber. Ambergris. Ambra grasea.

Intestinal concretion of sperm whale. Used in amulets, and an ingredient in perfume.

Ankolieb. Sweet cane. Holcus saccharatus.

Cane chewed for its sugary juice. Referrence to it is found in Kotschy et al. Plantes Tinneennes. Viena, 1867.

Arad and Arada.  Albizia amara (Roxb.)Boiv. subsp. sericocephala (Benth.)Bren.

A local deciduous tree. Pods; bark; leaves used as emetic, a poultice, a poison, astringent, anti-cough, anti-malarial, anti-Inflammatory, and in the treatment of jaundice.

Aradeb; Tamr hindi; Tumra (Kordofan); Al-Subbar (Arabic), and Danufi (Nuba).Tamarind tree; date of India. Tamarindus indica L. and Tamarindus officinalis Hook.

A large wild or cultivated tree. Young leaves, flowers, fruit bulb: boiled to thick paste, dried and sold as balls or cakes, infusion drunk, with Senna frequently added as anti-malarial; bark; root, and frayed twigs used as tooth brushes.

Arak; Shao; Miswak, and Akiol (Dinka). Mustard tree of the Bible; tooth brush tree. Salvadora persica L.

Grows in Sudan. Frayed twigs as tooth brushes; root; fruits; stem; bark used in treating dabas, flatulence, colic, as anthelminthics, and as tooth brush.


Native alcoholic spirit, distilled from a wide variety of carbohaydrates: dates, dura, guava, bananas, etc. Used also in treating splenic enlargement.

Asal Nahal. Bees' honey.

Used in the treatment of a variety of ailments: burning micturition, tropical ulcers, wounds, eye infections, joints affections, as anti-cough, in amulets, and as a beverage, and  surgical dressing.


Fermented alcoholic beverage, brewed from dates, dura (wad 'akar or fetarita) or millet to produce a sweet mild alcoholic beverage.


Fermented alcoholic beverage, brewed from honey and a bark of sado (a tree imported from Ethiopia).

Asida; Luqma; Qurrasa; Muttala; Abbuda; Hadib; Dibliba; Um-Halibin; Um-Kushkush; Bukkabiya; Wej; Mongakilo; Kesh Keshi; 'Ussara, and Sambousa.

Gruel or bread of different stiffness and shapes made of leavened dura, millet, bulrush millet, or wheat. Before cooking, the grain is leavened as 'ajin (fermented dough); the bread is eaten throughout the country with mulah (stew, soup); composition of dura 'asida: 14% protein, 1.5% ash, 2.5% crude fibre, 1% sugar on dry matter basis, 80% moisture (H.A. Dirar: 1987).

Atroun. Natron.

Common "surface salt", powder rock picked up in dry, hard yellow cakes from Bir Al-Natroon and other places in Donqola and North Eastern Kordofan, used as a medicinal item, helps beating molokhiya while being cooked (a drop of tea has a similar effect according to AbduAlla Al-Tayib: SNR; 45, 1945, page 22), or helps in the preparation of tumbak (snuff). Constituents: sand and clay, Sodium Chloride, Iron Oxide, Sodium Carbonate, Sodium Bicarbonate, Calcium Carbonate, Chlorides and Nitrates. Used also in treating syphilis, abdominal disorders, gonorrhoea, fever, splenic enlargement, jaundice, for dressing wounds, in managing teething troubles, as animal food, laxative, purgative, aphrodisiac, and in cooking.

Atroun Binna.

An amorphous obtained from Dongola region. Constituents: an alkaline earth. Boil, strain water on to dates, boil together. Used in treating fever and as a cooking item.