Friday, March 26, 2010

Folklife Fridays: Some Old Home Remedies

May we never have to live without modern pharmaceuticals.

The following home remedies are from Culpepper's Complete Herbal, which was first printed in 1623. My copy is a "modern" version, printed in 1814, with improvements.

Parts of Living Creatures, and Excrement's.
The brain of sparrows being eaten, provokes lust exceedingly.

The brain of a hare being roasted, helps trembling, it makes children breed teeth easily, their gums being rubbed with it, it also helps scald heads, and falling off of hair, the head being anointed with it.

Crab eyes break the stone, and open stoppings of the bowels.

The lungs of a fox, well dried, (but not burned) is an admirable strengthener to the lungs.

The liver of a duck, stops fluxes, and strengthens the liver exceedingly.

The liver of a frog, being dried and eaten, helps quartan agues, or as the vulgar call them, third-day agues.

A sheep's or goat's bladder being burnt, and the ashes given inwardly, helps the diabetes.

A flayed mouse dried and beaten into powder, and given at a time, helps such as cannot hold their water, or have a diabetes, if you do the like three days together.

Bears grease stays the falling off of the hair.

Fox grease helps pains in the ears.

Elk's claws or hoofs are a sovereign remedy for the falling sickness, though it be but worn in a ring, much more being taken inwardly; but some say it must be the hoof of the right foot behind.

Do you really want to complain about your pills anymore?