A pastille is a medicinal, alchemical or confectionary tablet meeting one of several descriptions:
- A compressed pellet of herbal material, sometimes including incense, which is burned to release smoke and/or vapours. This can merely be a device to cover up bad smells, might have some magical or medicinal effect or might even be a species of chemical weapon.
- A similar pellet of herbal and/or mineral material, usually bound together with gum or starch, which is designed to be chewed, swallowed or dissolved in the mouth, usually for medicinal effect.
- The modern descendant of the medicinal pastille above, with increased levels of flavouring and sweetening and no active ingredients. This is the product of the same evolutionary forces that turned things like Coca-cola from "health drinks" into a leisure beverage.
The oral tablet form of the pastille is also known as a troche and overlaps considerably with the lozenge.
Game and Story Use
- Potions in pastille form might be an interesting bit of local colour - probably best to stick to the oral tablet form, although the burnt version might be a useful consumable item for the right purposes.
- Less magical alchemical supplies might be a useful bit of adventuring gear - for example to counter insect swarms or counteract the stenches of particularly stinky monsters.
- Confectionary style "fruit pastilles" might well be a popular sideline for the herbalist or apothecary to turn out … or might be a placebo for the wealthy worried well.
- Making inert sweets might be a form of apprentice work, practicing pill making and creating a saleable product without the risk of poisoning anyone.