Tag: Pre-modern Medicine

Finding Modern Medical Treatments in Medieval Places

[caption id="" align="alignright" width="257"] Pentafillos (Cinquefoil) and Columbaris (Vervain) from Pseudo-Apuleius Herbal, 11th century, Bodleian MS Ashmole 1431, fol. 6r. The Old English Herbarium credits Pentafillos, or ‘fifleafe’ in Old English, as a curative for anything from joint ache to stomachaches and headaches to even ulcers. To the author’s knowledge, however, the efficacy of fifleafein these recipes has not been tested recently.[/caption] At this year’s Society for General Microbiology’s Annual Conference, researchers from the University of Nottingham presented results from tests using a modern recreation of a 10th-century cure for a stye (an infected eyelash follicle). This Anglo-Saxon eye-salve recipe, found...

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