Galangal. N. F. IV. Galanga. China Root. India Root. Galanga, Fr. East India Catarrh Root. Rhizoma Galangae, P. G. Galgant, G.—This is described in the National Formulary IV as "the dried rhizome of Alpinia officinarum Hance. (Fam. Zingiberaceae.)" Two varieties are described by authors, the Galanga major and Galanga minor, or large and small galangal. They are probably the roots of different plants. The large galangal is derived from Alpinia Galanga Willd. (Maranta Galanga L., Galanga officinalis Salisb.). According to H. F. Hance of Canton, the smaller galangal is the product of a distinct but closely allied plant, Alpinia officinarum Hance. (A. J. P., xliii, 408.) Both forms are brought from the East Indies. Galangal of the N. F. is described as "irregularly branched, from 2 to 10 cm. in length and from 1 to 2 cm. in thickness, the branches thinner toward the base; marked with the fine annuli of the leaf bases, which are from 3 to 10 mm. apart and of lighter color than the general surface; externally reddish- or rusty-brown; internally of a lighter orange-brown; cut ends of the branches circular, with recurved margin; fracture fibrous. Odor aromatic and agreeable; taste hot, spicy, resembling ginger. The powder is reddish-brown and, when examined under the microscope, exhibits numerous simple starch grains up to 0.06 mm. in diameter, the small grains few in number, the large grains narrow-ellipsoidal, broadened at one end, sometimes truncate, frequently curved, occasionally with a lateral development, lamellae mostly indistinct, point of origin of growth circular or a cleft in the larger end of the grain, sometimes absent; numerous yellowish oil cells and reddish resin cells; fragments of tracheae with reticulate thickenings or simple pores; thick-walled sclerenchymatous fibers with oblique pores. Galangal yields not more than 10 per cent. of ash." N. F. According to Morin, galangal contains a volatile oil, an acrid resin, kaempferid, C16H12O6, galangin, C15H10O5. alpinin, C17H12O6, and galangol, with an unknown gummy substance and lignin. A. Vogel, Jr., found also starch and fixed oil. (Ph. Cb., 1844, 158.) The active principles are the volatile oil and acrid resin. Galangal is a stimulant aromatic. It was known to the ancient Greeks and Arabians, and formerly entered into numerous compounds. (A. J. P., xliii.) Dose, from fifteen to thirty grains (1.0-2.0 Gm.) in substance, and twice as much in infusion.
The Dispensatory of the United States of America, 1918, was edited by Joseph P. Remington, Horatio C. Wood and others.