The time of the introduction of malt (Hordeum distichon) antedates the lore of systematic medication. Germinated barley, kiln-dried, has been employed in the making of malted liquors since a very early date, and malt liquors have been in domestic use, both as a beverage and an extract, for a very long period. The introduction of malt into the pharmacopeia resulted from the empirical use of the semi-proprietary "Extracts of Malt," which a few years after the middle of the last century became popular in domestic as well as in professional use. Its introduction to medicine is, however (as with many other substances of merit or otherwise), due largely to the efforts of manufacturing pharmacists.
The History of the Vegetable Drugs of the U.S.P., 1911, was written by John Uri Lloyd.