Marshmallow is a flowering member of the genus Althaea, the name for which is taken from the Greek word that means "to heal." The leaf of this Eurasian plant has a long history of documented use by the ancient Romans, Greeks, and Chinese. The entire plant is mentioned in the literature as a "famine food" and the leaf is specifically described in Homer's Iliad, which dates to around 710 BC.
Today, dried marshmallow leaf is used to prepare teas, tinctures, extracts, and oil infusions. Because the leaf swells when placed in liquid, it's possible to prepare formulas using a cold, non-alcoholic liquid as macerate.