Saturday, May 7, 2011

Medicines for the Teeth - 17th-Century Medical Remedies

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Jan Steen (Dutch Baroque era painter, 1625-1679) The Doctors Visit

These medical remedies from a book by 17th-century physician are transcribed by Londoner Sheyne Lucock. He writes on his personal blog, "For many years I have been planning to get around to transcribing and publishing on the Internet a wonderful little book that has been in my family for many years. It is a handbook used by a practising Physician in the 17th century, and liberally annotated in the margins with comments and additions to the many and varied treatments and remedies. If nothing else, it helps to explain the high mortality rate associated with visits by a doctor!" Lucock writes on his transcription blog, "There is a preface by R.W., and although it is not known what the initials stand for, he was closely associated with the works of Culpeper, and therefore very familiar with the latest herbal treatments and remedies."

Medicines for the Teeth.

For the Tooth-ache
Take the inner Rine of an Eldar Tree, and bruise it a little, and put thereto a little Pepper, and make it in Balls, and lay it to your Teeth, and be whole.

The cause of these impediments may come, either by an humour descending out of the Head to the Teeth, or Gummes, or by corroding or eating of Worms, or corruption of Blood, lying and being upon, and betwixt the Teeth: or it may come by drinking of hot Wines, eating of hot Spices, or hot Apples, Pears, Cherries, and such like; and it may come of a hot Liver or Stomach: and ever beware of pulling out of thy Teeth, for pull out once, and pull out more, but if it be hollow pull it out, for it will rot still more and more; do what thou canst.

Medicines for the Teeth. For Worms in the Teeth
Take Henbane seed, and lay it upon a flat Stone, and set it upon a Chafingdish of Coals, and let the smoke go into your Mouth, and this will kill the Worm shortly.

Medicines for the Teeth. To make Childrens Teeth come
Take the Brains of a Hare, and seeth them, and anoint the Gummes therewith; and take the Brains of a Hen likewise, and rub the Gummes therewith, and this shall make the Teeth grow without aking.

Medicines for the Teeth. For the Tooth-ach
Take Ivy Berries, and seeth them well in Vinegar, and when they be well sodden, sip some of the liquor as hot as you may suffer it, and hold it in your Mouth till it be cold, and then cast it out, and take new, and do so three or four times, and it will ease you.

Another for the same
Take and rost and Egge hard, and put therein a Spoonfull of Salt, and two Spoonfulls of Vinegar, or good Aleger, and temper them well together, till they be a Pap, then strain it, and with a little fine Cloth put some thereof into your Mouth, and when you have spat out the corruption, refresh the same with more, and it will take away the Pain shortly.

Medicines for the Teeth. For a Canker, and a Tooth-ach
Take Smalladge, and Sorrell Leaves, Alum, and Glasse, and make thereof a Powder, and lay it to the Sore, wheresoever it be, and for the Tooth that is hollow and aketh, take the Flowers and Leaves of Pellitory, and stamp it with Salt, and fill the hollow Tooth therewith, and be whole.

Medicines for the Teeth. For the Tooth-ach
Take Henbane-seed, and the Powder of Amber, of each a like much, and lay them on a glowing tile, and make a Pipe that thy Breath may go through to the fore Tooth, and this will kill the Worms, and pout away the Tooth-ach.

Medicines for the Teeth. A Water for the Tooth
Take and distill the Water of Mother wort and hold it in thy Mouth a good while, and it will kill the Pain of the Teeth, and the stinking thereof. Also Water of Vervain, or Hysope Water will do the like.

Medicines for the Teeth. For to remove a Tooth
Take the Root of a Mulberry Tree, and lay it in Vinegar, three dayes and three Nights, and then dry it in the Sun, and make Powder thereof, and rub thy Teeth therewith, and it will fall out.

Medicines for the Teeth. For the Tooth-ach
Take the green part of Eldar Rine, not the outermost, nor the innermost, but the green in the middle between both, and Sage, Rue, and Ginger, and a good deal of Salt, then grind them all together in a mortar, and seeth it in white Wine, and make a Plaister thereof, and lay to thy Cheek, and be whole.

Another for the same
Take a Pint of the strongest Vinegar thou canst get, and a handfull of Sage, the Root of a red Nettle the quantity of a Fingers length, and as much of the Rine of an Oke, and cut them in little pieces, and so let the Vinegar and all the rest seeth together from a Pint, then let the Patient chew it on the fore Tooth, and so dresse him Evening and Morning, half of it at each time, and this shall help him for ever. Probatum est.

Medicines for the Teeth. To make the Teeth white
Take the Flower of Rie, Salt, and Honey, and mingle them well together, and therewithall rub thy Teeth every day twice or thrice, and then wash them clean with Water, and they will be clean. Or take green branches of Broom and burn them, and make thereof a Powder, and burn Alum, and mix them together, and then temper them with fair Water, and rub thy Teeth therewith, and it will do away the blacknesse of them.

Medicines for the Teeth. A notable Medicine for the Tooth-ach
Take Pellitory of Spain, both of the Leaf, and of the Root, wash it and stamp it, and thereof make three Balls, every Ball as big as a Plumb, and lay the first Ball between the Teeth and the Gummes, the space of a miles riding, and even as the water ingendreth in they Mouth spit it out whole, and put in another Ball, as thou diddest at the first, and likewise the third, and to let the Water run out of thy Mouth still, and be whole straight.

Medicines for the Teeth. To take away the Tooth-ach in half an hour
Take Henbane Seed, Smallage Seed, and Poppy Seed, of each the weight of a Penny, and make Pellets thereof as big as a Vache, and with a quantity of Aqua vitae, and lay it unto thy Teeth that ake, and the pain shall cease straight.

Medicines for the Teeth. An approved Medicine for the Tooth-ach
Take Berries of Ivy, and the scraping of a Harts Horn, and boil it in white Wine, and make a Plaister thereof, and lay it to thy Cheek, and hold the Liquor thereof in thy Mouth, and thou shalt be whole. Or take Pepper, Salt, and the Roots of Primrose, and dry them all together, and make a Powder thereof, and rub thy Teeth therewith.

Medicines for the Teeth. For the Tooth-Ach
Take the Root of Henbane, and seeth it in Vinegar, and hold in thy Mouth the Decodtion thereof, and the pain of the Teeth will away straight: or take Hysope, and make a decoction with Vinegar, ans wash your Mouth, and Teeth therewith being hot, and the pain will away.

Another for the same
Take Wheat bran, and good stale Ale, and make it thick like Mustard, and let it soke therein a quarter of an hour, then strain it, and put thereto the Powder of Pepper a good quantity, and some of the Juice of Rue, and make it somewhat thick, and put it into a little bag of linnen cloth, and lay it between thy Cheek and they Teeth, and lie down on that side, and let the Water run out of thy Mouth, and use it three or four times, and thou shalt never have the Tooth ach more: or take Hounds tongue, and stamp it, and frie it with Butter, and make a Plaister thereof, and bind it to thy Cheek on that side that the pain is, and thou shalt be whole. Proved.

Medicines for the Teeth. A Regiment for the Tooth ach
You must wash your Mouth before and after Meat with warm Water to cleanse the Mouth and purge the Humors from the Gums, which descend out of the Head, it is good every Morning to wash the Mouth, and to rub the Teeth with a Sage Leaf, or with Powder made of Cloves, and Nutmegs. You must forbear Lettice, and raw fruits, all tart things, and the chewing of hard things: also all Meats of evill digestion, an d vomiting, and straining of your self.

Medicines for the Teeth. To keep the Teeth sweet, clean, and from danger of Worms, or a Regiment Ach
Take a Pint of White Wine, two Ounces of Alum, and a quarter of an ounce of Honey, boil them together, and wash your Mouth therewith every morning.

Medicines for the Teeth. To make the teeth white
Take Vinegar of Quinces, and dip a little piece of Cloth in it, and rub thy Teeth, and Gums therewith: the said Vinegar fasteneth the Teeth and Gums, comforteth the Roots of the Teeth, and maketh sweet Breath.
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