Rhizome of Costus speciosus has been traditionally used for treating inflammatory and painful conditions. The objective of the present study was to provide a scientific basis for the traditional use. The ethanolic extract of the rhizome of Costus speciosus possesses anti-inflammatory and antipyretic properties. Anti-inflammatory property was studied in carrageenan induced paw edema and cotton pellet induced granuloma formation. Significant anti-inflammatory effect was found against carrageenan induced edema formation in rats at a dose of 800 mg/kg and against cotton pellet granuloma formation in rats at doses of 400 mg/kg and 800 mg/kg. The antipyretic property was studied in yeast-induced pyrexia in rats. The antipyretic effect was only minimal and was observed only at 800 mg/kg dose.