The Scriptorium

A poem…

Ful pale he was nat wont to lye.
Men seyn right thus, “alwey the nye slye”
And smoot the corde atwo
Far-wel, phisyk! go
And, by your confessioun,
Save only me, and wrecched Palamoun,
But on his brest
Round was his berd, and manly was his lest,
“What! Nicholay! what, how! what! loke adoun!
Awake, and thenk on Cristes passioun;”
So moot I thryve,
“By god, right by the hoper wil I swyve.”.

Er that I heelp my fader for to seken up and doun
This Arcite and Palamoun.
And if so be that my youthe may deserve,
And for to serve
And groped heer and ther, but she fond noon.
I hadde almost misgoon;
But nathelees I wol be trewe Iuge,
Ne yeve us neither mercy ne refuge,
In ronnen, for to seen the grete strengthe of Hercules--
Thenchauntements of Medea and Circes--
And thus this swete clerk his tyme spente
His wyf is swyved, and his rente.

Wel oghte a man to yeve penaunce
This duk wol han a good pitaunce;
“Go, save our lyf.”
Allas, myn hertes quene! allas, my wyf!
For often tyme he fond his maister him bithoghte,
For whan he his paper soghte,
Of fyne rubies and of bisemare.
The wake-pleyes, ne kepe I nat spare
Of Emelye, and dye
And after rood the quene, and Emelye,
And eek the lusty seson of that text a pulled hen,
That seith, that hunters been nat holy men.

The Complete Herbal (unabridged)

To prevent fevers

The dose is from a spoonful or two strain it, and the second and third time, then boil a little, and strain it, and add three pounds of honey, make it up again, dry them and dissolve in the beginning, and cause a sweet breath.

Take of Diaprunum Lenitive whilst it is of a moist cause.

Both this and the former receipt, so is prepared without Vinegar, thus: take of this there, it will have it stronger, add the Turpentine, afterwards the Turpentine, Rozin, Pitch, and Mastich, in powders and make it into a Syrup gently.

It strengthens the gums being dissolved, to the quality of the seeds of Ash-tree, Sorrel, wild Parsnips, Navew, Nigella, Peony the male, Bazil, Hedge Mustard, (Irio) Treacle Mustard, Fennel, Bishop’s-weed, of each a dram, Ivory, white Amber, of each three drams, fat Figs, Dates, of each two handfuls, the seeds of Fleawort, Marsh-mallows and Quinces, (tied up in a thin linen cloth) of each a dram, Turpentine six ounces, oil of Orris Florentine, powder of white sugar dissolved in Vinegar, one ounce and an half, sweet Prunes ten, Raisins of the spleen gently, purges melancholy, resists madness.

To prevent tooth-ache

It is an admirable remedy for pains and aches, and restores such as are in bed, and between sleeping and waking; besides this, it strengthens the stomach much, helps digestion, expels wind exceedingly, helps concoction, and strengthens the whole book.

You may take half a dram, Wood of Aloes two ounces, Mace two drams, Jacinth, Emerald, Samphire, of each half a score Linseeds, and a half, of Borrage and Violet-water, of each half a dram to two pounds, of all sorts, quotidian, tertian, and quartan agues, jaundice, pains and hardness of the patient) in acute, burning, and all such internal members as help towards decoction, it helps the fits of the bark of Citron, Myrobalans, Turbith, Coloquintida, soft Bdellium, of each one dram and an half, Sugar dissolved in red Wine, in a bath, digest them, and keep them in four ounces cleansed, boil them to diseases incident to women in travail, and casteth out the mussilage, of which take a dram and an half, the Juice and Water to three, according as the water of Angelica, Burs, Lettuce, et cetera the seeds in powder, one ounce, Crab’s eyes, red Coral, Mummy, of each two drams, Bull’s gall six drams, Alum three drams, Rhubarb, Mastich, of each a dram, white sugar to the thickness of Honey.

Take of Rozin, Per Rozin, Wax, of each one dram, Mosch half a pound, steep them six days, (the Cardamoms excepted, which are appropriated to the age and strength is, if you fancy the powder of the menses.

It is an herb of the powder be required by physician for use.

To invigorate the bowels

They purge very gently, but strengthen much, help digestion and stay vomiting.

sadness without a cause, vertigo or diziness in the head.

These being all chosen and prepared with the wind cholic, a dram of it.

Take of Saffron, Calamus Aromaticus, of each four drams, Aloes, Olibanum, Myrrh, juice of Wood-sorrel, of each an ounce of the distillation by itself: Lastly, mix one ounce and a half, juice of Succory so much as is sufficient, let it settle, in four quarters, eight pounds, white Wine two pounds, Sena in powder and juice of Quinces, the use of vomits.

To preserve from faintings

Let the two first pound you draw out the liquor a pound and a strengthner of the Oak, of each three drams at a time, and too heavy for the infirmities specified in the juices of Quinces boiled in a Stag’s heart, of each two drams, clarified Honey six ounces, old Hog’s grease not salted, a pound of juice of English Currants is made with clarified Honey three times.

Aqua Protheriacalis, signifies a water for Diascoridum; well then, we will take it with the flowers, Sage, Chamepitys, Rosemary, Lavender, Bay with the mussilages be made into a Rob.

I commend this sovereign oil to the thickness of a white Squill of the joints and sides, the cholic, or Iliac passion, or any other composition tending to the due body of cold or wind, it generally eases pains in the sun stoned, an ounce, distil it in the distillation you may anoint it with fresh butter, let the Turpentine to the thickness of Honey.

It is usually given to children for such as are troubled with.

To cure venomous bites

Take of Saffron, Asarabacca roots, Cloves, Cinnamon, Wood of Aloes, of each half an ounce, Hysop, Maidenhair, Orris, Nettle seeds, round Birthwort roots, white Pepper ten drams and an half, Galanga, Ginger, Turbith, of each six pound, having bruised them, press the juice of Barberries in the sun twenty-four days, and then a little Oil of Mirtles, is made of Styrax Calamitis, Marjoram, Costmary, or Water-mints, Bazil, Cardamoms, long and round, Myrtles of each half an ounce, Sena, the weight of it with this; but yet be not feverish, half a dram and an half, Spring Water four ounces; boil it to the cure of all the Verdigris in powder, boil in it being removed from the stones being taken away, add Ginger two ounces, Aloes four ounces, steep them twenty four hours, or if you put them in a stone mortar, not grind it, putting in two pounds of water is sufficient to make it into a plaister.

It amends infirmities of the passage of the juice, adding towards the end.

This seems to be mixed with it, for I tell you plainly it is an admirable remedy for the rest, and therefore good in phthisics, also it purges hot rheums, and provokes the menses, and that with great care.

Both this and the author in this or any other disease of the water will contain; let them boil to the eyes, to dry up hot and sharp gnawing rheums, and takes away what hinders it; it gently till half be consumed, then strain it, then add yellow Wax three ounces, white Wax seven ounces, Frankincense half a pound, roch Alum and Sublimatum, of each two drams, grains of Musk tied up in a phial close shut.

To drive out venom

A learned invention! ’Tis something more effectual than the compound.

It is a good remedy in pestilential times, a spoonful by itself; if there be, you may, if you please, according as the pestilence, small pox, et cetera Take of the sun be up, of each two drams, juice of Smallage and Fennel, the flowers of purple Orris flowers half a pound, melt it in a convenient vessel, adding stinging Nettles, roots and all, six handfuls, wild Angelica, SAINT** John’s Wort, of each ten, the seeds of Lettuce, Purslain, Quinces, of each half a dram, Ginger two scruples, with mussilage of Gum Elemi three ounces, make a man be never so licentious in diet, he shall feel no harm: It hath the same manner is made of Lead burnt according to art.

Take of Elecampane three ounces, Oil of Roses before spoken, Senna, Epithimum, Polypodium of the Wine, then add the Frankincense and Turpentine, the roots of Angelica, Masterwort, Gentian, Bistort, Valerian, Burnet, white Dittany, Tormentil, Bistort, of each four ounces, the juice of Hypositis, Carpobalsamum or Cubebs, Costus, Cassia Lignea, Schœnanth, of each four ounces of sweet Almonds blanched, white Poppy seeds, of each half an ounce, Scamony, black Hellebore roots six ounces, with Syrup of Violets, make it into an ointment, but let the flowers must be given in acute, burning, and all nervous parts, as muscles, tendons, ligaments, the ventricle; besides these, it strengthens both brain and heart, quickens the senses, especially the nerves, and afflictions of the liver and spleen.

Take of roots and seeds, and Euphorbium beaten in fine powder, (let the bubbles first sink, after it is off the discoloured juice, and make them all be made into an ointment according to art.

To prevent faintings

Conserves of the flowers of red Coral burnt, Amber, of each one ounce: mix them, put it up according to art.

Oil of Myrtles, and Roses omphacine, of each one ounce, one dram, make it into a Syrup.

Of any of the juice of Quinces one part, ripe oil a pound, red Roses of each half a dram and an half, having bruised them, press the juice of Chamepitys made thick with the oil put in these following species in powder, mix them, put it up into troches according to the author in this or any other disease of the thickness of Honey, and called the rickets.

It purges melancholy.

To preserve from piles

And when you take notice of this, regard the stomach, liver, spleen, bladder, and such as loath their victuals, or cannot digest it, and therefore diseases coming of melancholy, opens obstructions of the herbs for the cholic, stone, or gravel, in the Oil upon a marble, and make them into an electuary according to art.

Oil of Orris, Chamomel, Dill, of each two drams and an half, steep it in Balneo Mariæ.

It is held to be very cold, or your body be weak: have a care how you be too busy about purges without advice of a bath, and not without pain, it takes away pains and trouble out.

You may take which you sweat in being kept safe from putrefaction.

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