In this study, cholinesterase inhibitory potential relevant to Alzheimer's disease and antioxidant activities of the dichloromethane, ethyl acetate, and ethanol extracts from the aerial parts and/or roots of fourteen Salvia (sage) species (S. argentea, S. bracteata, S. caespitosa, S. cryptantha, S. glutinosa, S. indica, S. microstegia, S. multicaulis, S. pinnata, S. quezelii, S. syriaca, S. tobeyi, S. verticillata subsp. amasiaca, and S. viscosa) were investigated. Cholinesterase inhibition was determined by Ellman method at 25, 50, and 100 mu g ml(-1). Their antioxidant activity was assessed by 2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) radical scavenging activity, metal-chelation capacity, and ferric-reducing antioxidant power (FRAP) assays. Total phenol and flavonoid contents of the extracts were also determined. The dichloromethane and ethanol extracts of the aerial parts of S. cryptantha were the most active ones against AChE (56.22 +/- 1.07%) and BChE (33.80 +/- 4.18%), respectively. The ethanol extracts exhibited better scavenging activity and FRAP. Anticholinesterase activity of 9 Salvia species (S. argentea, S. bracteata, S. caespitosa, S. indica, S. pinnata, S. quezelii, S. syriaca, S. tobeyi, and S. viscosa) is reported for the first time in the current study. (C) 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.