Old English Medical Remedies: Mandrake, Wormwood and Raven's Eye
Sinead Spearing (Author)
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DescriptionIn 9th century England Bishop Ælfheah the Bald is dabbling with magic. By collecting folk remedies from pagan women he risks his reputation. Yet posterity has been kind, as from the pages of Bald's book a remedy has been found that cures the superbug MRSA where modern antibiotics have failed. Within a few months of this discovery a whole new area of medical research called Ancientbiotics has been created to discover further applications for these remedies. Yet, what will science make of the elves, hags and nightwalkers which also stalk the pages of Bald's book and its companion piece Lacnunga, urging prescriptions of a very different, unsettling nature. Cures for the 'moon mad' and hysteria are interspersed with directives to drink sheep's dung and jump across dead men's graves. Old English Medical Remedies explores the herbal efficacy of these ancient remedies whilst evaluating the supernatural, magical elements and suggests these provide a powerful psychological narrative revealing an approach to healthcare far more sophisticated than hitherto believed. All the while, the voices of the wise women who created and used these remedies are brought to life, after centuries of denomination by the Church.
Pen and Sword History
April 19, 2018
6.4 X 0.9 X 9.3 inches | 1.15 pounds
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About the Author
Sinéad Spearing is a historian of psychology specializing in the research of obscure beliefs. She worked as a professional classical musician and teacher before returning to university to study psychology, achieving first-class honors. Author of Old English Medical Remedies, Sinéad also writes articles published in journals including those of the British Psychological Society and Mensa. When she is not delving into the supernatural aspects of religion and medicine Sinéad enjoys Tai Chi, playing the cello and spending time with her family in Kent.