Julie Bruton-Seal & Matthew Seal


Julie Bruton-Seal  Julie Bruton-Seal is a practicing medical herbalist, iridologist and        natural healer, and brings her own experience and case histories to this book. She qualified at the Selfheal School, under Dr Jill Davies and Christopher Hobbs, and is a Council member of the Association of Master Herbalists (AMH) and was editor of its quarterly magazine for 8 years. Julie was also one of the founding organisers of HerbFest, an annual gathering celebrating healing plants and herbal medicine.

She is also an artist, photographer, film-maker and writer, and has worked as a graphic designer. She co-authored the vegetarian cookbook Vegetarian Masterpieces. Her photographs have been widely published in books and magazines, including National Geographic, and she has worked as a wildlife illustrator and artist for many years, holding a number of exhibitions. She illustrated the children’s book When Elephant was King. She has lived in several countries, and is the daughter of renowned wildlife film-makers Des and Jen Bartlett, with whom she won an Emmy in 1993 for Survivors of the Skeleton Coast.

Matthew SealMatthew Seal’s first recorded proper words (according to his mother, who wouldn’t exaggerate on such a matter) were ‘meadowsweet’, uttered on a nature walk in the River Trent marshes when he was nearly three. Matthew grew up in a family of gardeners and botanists and, while not following his kinfolk into professional gardening or horticulture, he has never forgotten this early ‘greening’.

He has worked as an editor and writer in books, magazines and newspapers for over thirty-five years, in both the UK and South Africa. He is author of Survive and Thrive in the New South Africa. In addition to his ongoing freelance editing, he has experience in design and as a production manager for a radical publisher. He was for three years revise subeditor of Business Report, the largest-selling business daily in South Africa, and he was publications director of the Society for Editors and Proofreaders (SfEP).

Julie and Matthew have now written four books together. More info here.

Herbfeast 2015
Forgotten European herbs
While we were researching our latest book, The Herbalist’s Bible, a commentary on the Theatrum Botanicum of John Parkinson (1567–1650), we were struck by the number of herbs which were important in the past but which have been largely forgotten today in herbal practice.
Parkinson’s mighty tome, which appeared in 1640, is ‘the last of the great English herbals’, according to Eleanour Sinclair Rhode. Despite its Latin title, the Theatrum is written in English and has excellent indexes, so is fully searchable (there are online versions too). We have found it not merely of historical interest but a great current resource, which informs Julie’s practice and gives her daily inspiration. We feel that Parkinson the apothecary, gardener and herbalist has been unduly neglected, as indeed have many of the 3,800 plants whose ‘vertues’ or medicinal qualities he describes.
We will talk about a number of these largely forgotten herbs such as sanicle, self-heal, bugle, daisy and ox-eye daisy, rowan, sow thistle – and discuss how we can use them today. We will provide Parkinson’s text on the medicinal uses of each plant as handouts.
Julie Bruton-Seal & Matthew Seal