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Medicine

The written instructions for an onion and garlic eye salve from the Anglo-Saxon manuscript Bald's Leechbook. The remedy was found to kill MRSA bacteria.

Medieval Medicine: 1,000-year-old Onion and Garlic Salve Kills Modern Bacterial SuperBugs

To the surprise and excitement of researchers, a ninth century Anglo-Saxon treatment for eye infections has been used successfully to kill tenacious bacteria cultures. The ancient remedy consisting...
Asclepius – a fragment of mosaic bathroom in Kyustendil, Bulgaria.

The Rod of Asclepius and Zeus’s Fear of Immortality

Asclepius was a demi-god son of Apollo who developed such incredible powers of healing under the tuition of both his father and the centaur Chiron, that even Zeus felt threatened that he might...
A possible portrait of Saladin, found in a work by Ismail al-Jazari, circa 1185.

The Puzzling Death of Sultan Saladin: A 12th Century Medical Mystery Solved?

Here’s a 12th century medical mystery for you: What malady killed well-known Sultan Saladin? Was it small pox, tuberculosis, typhoid, or maybe malaria? Look at his symptoms – some of them were...
A seedhead of an opium poppy, Papaver somniferum, with white latex. (Public Domain) Cylinder-seal of the "Lady" or "Queen" (Sumerian NIN) Puabi, one of the defuncts of the Royal Cemetery of Ur, c. 2600 BC. Banquet scene, typical of the Early Dynastic Period.

New Research Provides First Peek at Ancient Mesopotamian Drug Use

Medical usage? Ritual practice? Or perhaps the drugs served both purposes? Researchers are asking what the recently recovered psychoactive drug residues from ancient Mesopotamia mean. But not...
A Sumatran tiger killed in Indonesia in 2016

‘Shape-shifter’ Slaughtered in Sumatra in the Form of a Tiger!

A shocking photograph is circulating which depicts a massive disemboweled Sumatran tiger, hanging in a public hall in North Sumatra, with villagers around it “trying to determine whether it was a...
Dragon head

Dragon Teeth Hunters and the Mindless Destruction of History

World myths present a holographic array of surreal characters and events, but among the most powerful and misunderstood of all mythological concepts, are dragon’s teeth. In Western mythology, when...
Skeleton with a hole in the skull.  Source: wellphoto/Shutterstock.com via The Conversation

Drilling Holes in the Skull was Never a Migraine Cure

Trepanation – the technique of removing bone from the skull by scraping, sawing, drilling or chiselling – has long fascinated those interested in the darker side of medical history. One stock tale is...
Vases hanging above The Stone of Anointing (Stone of Unction) in the entrance to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. These vases contain water with rose essence.

Getting High with the Most High: Drugs in the Bible

As the Bronze Age grew old, some of its oral traditions were recorded by poets with gods in their quills and drugs in their gardens. The Odyssey and the Vedas include verses still recited today that...
The Alchemist.

Spagyric Secrets of The Alchemists: Alchemy as Alternative Medicine

Even the best read of us sometimes come up against a word which needs a quick check in the dictionary, and Spagyric is one of those words. To discover the origins and magical meaning of this ancient...
Fragment of talisman used to exorcise the sick, Assyrian era.

Mixing Magic and Medicine: New Study Shows Mesopotamian Doctors Had to Battle Demons

Analysis of a collection of clay tablets confirms that a Mesopotamian doctor had to deal with more than just physical ailments. The ancient healer was expected to exorcise demons, ward off witchcraft...
A Frog underwater with a crown.

An Ambiguous Amphibian: The Everchanging Frog Symbol in World Myth

Frogs and toads played a wide variety of roles in ancient cultures. Although there are some differences, they generally represented female creation energy. Frogs appear in ancient stories, myths,...
A human skeleton in space.

Medical Astrology: Moon Fever and Diseases Sent from the Skies

For centuries, humans have believed that the celestial realm could influence everyday life. This is the basis of astrology. The rise and fall of kingdoms and the fortunes of individuals have all been...
Healing Temple of Aesculapius (Asklepios) by Robert Thom

A Dream Cure? The Effective Healing Power of Dream Incubation in Ancient Greece

In the ancient world, many cultures built elaborate temple complexes dedicated to their healer gods - Imhotep in Egypt and Asklepios in Greece for example. These gods were recognized as having the...
The public entrance to the Unicorn Cave.

What Extraordinary Discovery Led to Unicorn Cave Magically Transforming into a Cash Cow?

Einhornhöhle, which may be translated as ‘Unicorn Cave’ in English, is a cave located in the Harz, a low mountain range in a highland area Northern Germany. It has been pointed out that the Unicorn...
An indigenous person of Peru taking traditional medicine.

Ancient Medicinal Knowledge of Amazon Tribes to Be Recorded in Writing for First Time in History

“That plant will save you from a poisonous snake bite,” my Kichwa guide, Pidru, pointed out as I tried to remove my boot from a foot of mud in the depths of the Amazon jungle in Ecuador. “And this...
‘A maid bringing medicine and soup to her master who has a cold.’ (1857)

Medicine Maidens: Why Did Women Become the Primary Medical Providers in Early Modern Households?

A primary female occupation in the early modern period (AD 1500-1800) was that of medicine. Though there were formal doctors—known by various titles and with various tasks detailed by their...

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