Methods of Processing Medicinal Plants: A Semantic Study of the Use of Verbs in Sesotho Sa Leboa
Keywords:collection, administration, preparation, process, method , medicinal plant
From time immemorial, medicinal plants have been common traditional medicines for treating diseases and ailments in most households. Even today, plants are used for treating ailments and diseases such as the flu and coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). This article investigates the semantic use of verbs for collection, preparation and administration as methods of processing medicinal plants in Sesotho sa Leboa. Most of the medicinal plants, like folktales, are extinct, so by writing this study the ethnobotanical knowledge of the communities will be promoted and preserved. Medicine from medicinal plants is mostly used in a traditional medical healthcare system. Recent studies have indicated how the medicinal plants form the foundation of traditional medicine and how these are sometimes incorporated into allopathic or biomedical medicine. For the medicinal plant to attain its medicinal value, several processes take place and verbs are used to describe them (processes). Specific meaning is attached to the verbs of methods used during the collection, preparation and administration of medicinal plants. Ethnobotanical theory forms the framework of this article, supported by the theory of linguistics. A qualitative approach is used to explain concepts in the collection, interpretation and analysis of data. Data is collected from existing documents and auto-ethnography. The study found that verbs used in the methods of processing medicinal plants are semantically used in relation to specific parts of the plant.
Abubakar, A.R., and M. Hague. 2020. “Preparation of Medicinal Plants: Basic Extraction and Fractionation: Procedures for Experimental Purposes.” Journal of Pharmacy and Bioallied Sciences 2 (1): 1–9. https://doi.org/10.4103/jpbs.JPBS_175_19. DOI: https://doi.org/10.4103/jpbs.JPBS_175_19
Afolayan, A. J., D. S. Grierson, and W. O. Mbeng. 2014. “Ethnobotanical Survey of Medicinal Plants Used in the Management of Skin Disorders among Xhosa Communities of the Amathole District, Eastern Cape, South Africa.” Journal of Ethnopharmacology 153 (1): 220–32. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jep.2014.02.023. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jep.2014.02.023
Agisho, H., M. Osie, and T. Lambore. 2014. “Traditional Medicinal Plants Utilization, Management and Threats in Hadiya Zone, Ethiopia.” Journal of Medicinal Plants Studies 2 (2): 94–108. https://www.plantsjournal.com/vol2Issue2/Issue_feb_2014/19.1.pdf.
Ayalew, S., A. Kebede, A. Mesfin, and G. Mulualem. 2017. “Ethnobotanical Study of Medicinal Plants Used by Agro Pastoralist Somali People for the Management of Human Ailments in Jeldesa Cluster, Dire Dawa Administration, Eastern Ethiopia.” Journal of Medicinal Plants Research 11 (9): 171–87. https://doi.org/10.5897/JMPR2016.6292. DOI: https://doi.org/10.5897/JMPR2016.6292
Broster, J. A., and H. C. Bourn. 1981. Amagqira: Religion, Magic and Medicine in Transkei. Cape Town: Via Africa.
Chandrasekara, A., and F. Shahidi. 2018. “Herbal Beverages: Bioactive Compounds and Their Role in Disease Risk Reduction—A Review.” Journal of Traditional and Complementary Medicine 8 (4): 451–58. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jtcme.2017.08.006. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jtcme.2017.08.006
Chomsky, N. 2011. Current Issues in Linguistic Theory. The Hague: Mouton and Co.
Delvaux, C. 2009. “‘Strip-Trees’: The Life After: Responses to Bark Harvesting of Medicinal Tree Species from Forêt Classée des Monts Kouffé, Benin.” PhD diss., Ghent University. https://doi.org/10.21825/af.v22i2.17999. DOI: https://doi.org/10.21825/af.v22i2.17999
Keep Talking. n.d. “Mastication: The Art of Chewing.” Accessed April 1, 2022. https://www.keeptalkingspeech.com/chewing-101.html.
Levin, B. 1993. English Verb Classes and Alternations: A Preliminary Investigation. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press.
Mahanom, H., A. H. Azizah, and M. H. Dzulkifly. 1999. “Effect of Different Drying Methods on Concentrations of Several Phytochemicals in Herbal Preparation of 8 Medicinal Plants Leaves.” Malaysian Journal of Nutrition 5 (1): 47–54.
Maroyi, A. 2013. “Traditional Use of Medicinal Plants in South-Central Zimbabwe: Review and Perspectives.” Journal of Ethnobiology and Ethnomedicine 9: 31. https://doi.org/10.1186/1746-4269-9-31. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1186/1746-4269-9-31
Martin, G. J. 2004. Ethnobotany: A Methods Manual. New York, NY: Taylor & Francis.
Masoga, M. A., and A. L. Shokoane. 2020. “Socio-Economic Challenges Faced by Traditional Healers in Limpopo Province of South Africa.” AlterNative: An International Journal of Indigenous Peoples 16 (4): 317–32. https://doi.org/10.1177/1177/1801-20956718. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/1177180120956718
Mathibela, K. M. 2013. “An Investigation into Aspects of Medicinal Plant Use by Traditional Healers from Blouberg Mountain, Limpopo Province, South Africa.” MSc diss., University of Limpopo. http://hdl.handle.net/10386/966. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sajb.2013.02.073
Maundu, P., D. Berger, C. ole Saitabau, J. Nasieku, M. Kipelian, S. Mathenge, Y. Morimoto, and R. Höft. 2001. “Ethnobotany of the Loita Maasai: Towards Community Management of the Forest of the Lost Child—Experiences from the Loita Ethnobotany Project.” People and Plants Working Paper 8. Paris: UNESCO. https://unesdoc.unesco.org/ark:/48223/pf0000126660.
McElmurry, T. 2013. “Herbal Healer: What Is Marula?” Nwitimes.com, updated July 25, 2016. Accessed June 21, 2023. https://www.nwitimes.com/niche/get-healthy/healthy-living/herbal-healer-what-is-marula/article_ea4af8ec-b3c7-51a5-92cb-a3598b3c5189.html.
Medisential. 2022. “Top 10 Herbal Enema Recipes You Must Try.” Accessed April 7, 2022. https://medisential.com/blogs/health/top-10-herbal-enema-recipes-you-must-try.
Moeng, T. E. 2010. “An Investigation into the Trade of Medicinal Plants by Muthi Shops and Street Vendors in the Limpopo Province, South Africa.” MSc diss., University of Limpopo. http://hdl.handle.net/10386/326.
Mogale, M. M. P., D. C. Raimando, and B. E. van Wyk. 2019. “The Ethnobotany of Central Sekhukhuneland, South Africa.” South African Journal of Botany 122: 90–122. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sajb.2019.01.001. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sajb.2019.01.001
Mojapelo, M. L. 2013. “The Semantics of Northern Sotho Verbs as Translated from English: Comments on the African Languages WordNet Project.” In Translation and Meaning Part 10: Proceedings of the Łódź Session of the 5th International Maastricht – Łódź Duo Colloquiumon “Translation and Meaning,” edited by B. Lewandowska-Tomaszczyk and M. Thelen, 143–56. Maastricht: Zuyd University of Applied Sciences, Maastricht School of Translation and Interpreting.
Monakisi, C. M. 2007. “Knowledge and Use of Traditional Medicinal Plants by the Setswana-Speaking Community of Kimberly, Northern Cape of South Africa.” MSc diss., University of Stellenbosch. http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/18589.
Noila, S. 2020. “The Procedure for Collecting Medicinal Plants, Basic Tools and Technology for Preparing Medicinal Forms from Their Raw Materials.” Biomedical Journal of Scientific and Technical Research 29 (3): 22495–2498. https://doi.org/10.26717/BJSTR.2020.29.004812. DOI: https://doi.org/10.26717/BJSTR.2020.29.004812
Pan, S.-Y., G. Litscher, S.-H. Gao, S.-F. Zhou, Z.-L. Yu, H.-Q. Chen, S.-F. Zhang, M.-K. Tang, J.-N. Sun, and K.-M. Ko. 2014. “Historical Perspective of Traditional Indigenous Medical Practices: The Current Renaissance and Conservation of Herbal Resources.” Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine 2014: 525340. https://doi.org/10.1155/2014/525340. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1155/2014/525340
Rankoana, S. A., P. X. Shilubane, and M. J. Potgieter. 2015. “The Medical Ethnobotanical Knowledge of the Tsonga-Shangana in Bushbuckridge, Mpumalanga, South Africa.” African Journal for Physical, Health Education, Recreation and Dance 1 (4): 773–87.
Seile, B. P., S. Bareetseng, M. T. Koitsiwe, and A. O. Aremu. 2022. “Indigenous Knowledge on the Uses, Sustainability and Conservation of African Ginger (Siphonochilus Aethiopicus) among Two Communities in Mpumalanga Province, South Africa.” Diversity 14 (3): 192. https://doi.org/10.3390/d14030192. DOI: https://doi.org/10.3390/d14030192
Semenya, S. S., and A. Maroyi. 2018. “Plants Used by Bapedi Traditional Healers to Treat Asthma and Related Symptoms in Limpopo Province, South Africa.” Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine 2183705. https://doi.org/10.1155/2018/2183705. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1155/2018/2183705
Semenya, S. S., M. J. Potgieter, and L. J. C. Erasmus. 2013. “Indigenous Plant Species Used by Bapedi Healers to Treat Sexually Transmitted Infections: Their Distribution, Harvesting, Conservation and Threats.” South African Journal of Botany 87: 66–75. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sajb.2013.03.001. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sajb.2013.03.001
Tahir, M., L. Gebremichael, T. Beyene, and M. van Damme. 2021. “Ethnobotanical Study of Medicinal Plants in Adwa District, Central Zone of Tigray Regional State, Northern Ethiopia.” Journal of Ethnobiology and Ethnomedicine 17: 71. https://doi.org/10.1186/s13002-021-00498-1. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1186/s13002-021-00498-1
Tembane, S. M. 2019. “A Comparative Study of Medical and Health Terms with Special Reference to Sesotho sa Leboa and Western Terminology.” PhD diss., University of South Africa. http://hdl.handle.net/10500/26660.
Tugume, P., E. K. Kakudidi, M. Buyinza, J. Namaalwa, M. Kamatenesi, P. Mucunguzi, and J. Kalema 2016. “Ethnobotanical Survey of Medicinal Plant Species Used by Communities around Mabira Central Forest Reserve, Uganda.” Journal of Ethnobiology and Ethnomedicine 12: 5. https://doi.org/10.1186/s13002-015-0077-4. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1186/s13002-015-0077-4
Van’t Klooster, C. I. E. A., V. Haabo, S. Ruysschaert, T. Vossen, and T. R. van Andel. 2018. “Herbal Bathing: An Analysis of Variation in Plant Use among Saramaccan and Aucan Maroons in Suriname.” Journal of Ethnobiology and Ethnomedicine Volume 14: 20. https://doi.org/10.1186/s13002-018-0216-9. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1186/s13002-018-0216-9
Van Wyk, B. E., B. Van Oudtshoorn, and N. Gericke. 2009. Medicinal Plants of South Africa. 2nd ed. Pretoria: Briza Publications.
Van Wyk, A. S., and G. Prinsloo. 2018. “Medicinal Plant Harvesting, Sustainability and Cultivation in South Africa.” Biological Conservation 227: 335–42. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.biocon.2018.09.018. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.biocon.2018.09.018
Walsh, G. 2022. “Natural Cough Remedies: 9 Expert Tips to Cure a Cough from the Comfort of Your Home.” GoodtoKnow, December 15, 2022. Accessed April 4, 2022. https://www.goodto.com/wellbeing/wellbeing-news/natural-cough-remedies-104739.
WHO (World Health Organization). 2018. WHO Guidelines on Good Herbal Processing Practices for Herbal Medicines. Technical Report Series, 1010. Geneva: WHO.
WHO (World Health Organization). 2000 General Guidelines for Methodologies on Research and Evaluation of Traditional Medicine. Geneva: WHO. https://apps.who.int/iris/handle/10665/66783.
Zhou, L., and M. B. Nunes. 2016. “Formulating a Framework for Desktop Research in Chinese Information Systems.” In Handbook of Research on Innovations in Information Retrieval, Analysis, and Management, edited by J. Tiago Martins and A. Molnar, 307–25. Hershey, PA: IGI Global. https://doi.org/10.4018/978-1-4666-8833-9.ch011. DOI: https://doi.org/10.4018/978-1-4666-8833-9.ch011
Ziervogel, D., and P. C. Mokgokong. 1975. Groot Noord-Sotho Woordeboek. Pretoria: Van Schaick and University of South Africa.
How to Cite
Copyright will be vested in Unisa Press. However, as long as you do not use the article in ways which would directly conflict with the publisher's business interests, you retain the right to use your own article (provided you acknowledge the published version of the article) as follows:
- to make further copies of all or part of the published article for your use in classroom teaching;
- to make copies of the final accepted version of the article for internal distribution within your institution, or to place it on your own or your institution's website or repository, or on a site that does not charge for access to the article, but you must arrange not to make the final accepted version of the article available to the public until 18 months after the date of acceptance;
- to reuse all or part of this material in a compilation of your own works or in a textbook of which you are the author, or as the basis for a conference presentation.