Imagens da página
PDF
ePub

tion, they may prove a sword in a madman's hand, and not at all auxiliary, but pernicious and hurtful; hence comes the saying, * 'That steel is the worst instrument of death, and best of life;1 where* fore our learned and well-experienced doctors now-a-days abbreviate the tedious and various theraupeutick method of physick, and in lieu of it prescribe their patients only a chalybeate course, to satisfy all intentions, judging it to be instar omnium, or equivalent to all other prescriptions, + and, as a learned physician was wont to say; 'As true as steel.'

The sanative vertues and energies of those waters are beyond any polifpharmacon prescription imaginable, being very prevalent against frequent giddiness and scotomia, passions of the heart. and fainting of spirits, with a fear and dread, as it were, of present death. In hypochondriacal and hysterick fits, by suppressing the anqthymiasis of ill vapours, and hindering damps to exhale to the head and heart, no remedy more effectual. In scurvy, which is an endemick disease, it is an appropriated and specifick remedy, by correcting the depraved ferments, and dulcifying the blood. In hemorrhages, taken with advice, it is of great strength and force; in both obstructions and overflowing of the terms also, an excellent remedy. It is good against all obstructions of the liver, spleen, and mesentery: leucophlegmatia, febris alba, seu amatoria, or green-sickness, stone, and gravel; nay, it cures hydrophobia, or the disease, called 'the fear of water,' commonly contracted by the bite of a mad dog, methodically drank.

Moreover, these waters are endowed with an admirable and powerful faculty, in rendering those who drink of them fruitful and prolifick; by reason of their spirituous ferment, they enliven, invigorate, and actuate the whole mass of blood, the nobler parts of the body and spirits thereof: Likewise reduce them from a saline or sulphureous dyscrasy, and sometimes from both, to a sweet balsamick, spirituous, and sanguineous temperament, % which naturally incites and inspires men and women to amorous emotions and titillations, being previous dispositions, enabling them to procreation. This may be the aitiology of this product in some sense.

Venus comes from the salt sea, through many crannies, interstices, pores of the earth, and dangerous precipices, foaming to meet her beloved Mars in the bowels of the earth; whom she no sooner embraces, but she is impregnated and big with a valiant hero, in the bed of honour, with no insipid delight: from thence, soon after this digression, she rises triumphing in our hemisphere at Tunbridge, generously imparting and distributing this impregnative faculty to her votaries, in order to preserve and perpetuate mankind.§ .. J

To her, Mars, in a poetical rhapsody, speaks:

Tu Dea! tu rerum naturam sola gubernas, ,'

Nee sine te quidquam, dias in luminis oras, 3
Exoritur: nee sit latum nee amabile quicquam.,'

* Pfssimum mortis ted optimum Vitse initrumentHra.

* '% Vt litljut veluti panacexutus extern possit fxcusare medicamenta.;

; Actionct tequustur temperainentumcorporis. & OmneUonuui sui comnuinicatWum^

* :- . -' j, 2 - - " " "" v'' *

'Thou goddess! turnest Nature's wheel,

'To thee all beings do appeal; * Without thee, neither joy nor love we feel. So passionate was he for a married Venus: To these lines I may annex a poetical hypothesis, de aquis chalybcatis, or chalybeate waters, made by a learned and ingenious man, alluding to the preceding discourse:

Quid valet obdurum placidc dissolvere Martem?

Ecce Venus mudidans mollit amove Deum.
Sptima maris transit telluris sedula rimas,

Quemq; ardet juvenem; quwrit ubiq; furens.
Non erit ergo novum si nostris emicet undis.

Hie Martem exultans convenit ilia suum.
Salsis in terrae thalumo complexibus hument,

Surgit Sf explosus colliquefactus amor.
Uinc tantis dignwferratw laudibus undw:

Marsprwbet robur: dot Venus alma decus.
Hue qucis forma peril: hue, huc,properate puellw,

Vospulchras reddit Candida lympha Deas.
Hue properate senes, curvans quos deprimet wtast

Ecce Dei vires exhibet unda sui.
Vcntriculos implete mares: implete pucllw,

Quos bibitisfantes rivus amoris erunt.
Posthac de Baccho sileant proverbia: friget

Non sine Lenwo, sed sine Marie Venus.

* What thing can reach Mars his hard heart?
''Tis Venus only has the dart.'The foaming sea finds Terra's chinks,
'And mad with love into 'em sinks. * 'Tis nothing strange if Venus rise,

'And both in joy, here, sympathise.

* Moisten'd in salt embraces bed,'She melted, rising rears her head.

* Hence waters fame of iron race,

'Mars gives the strength, Venus the grace; 'Come hither, dames, whose beauties fade,

* A goddess in a trice is made.

* Come hither, old, whom age has bent,'God's power is omnipotent.

* Drink, men and women, drink and swell,
'You can't drink dry kind Cupid's well.

* Drink, sirs and ladies; he, she dove,'What here you drink, increases love.
No more of Bacchus; Venus chill

*Appears, when Mars has no good-will,

* Nay, only then, to say I'm bold,'Venus is so, when Mars is cold. Notwithstanding all these encomiums of the waters, yet gome are ©f opinion, they are not proper in some kind of maladies: as ia

a rheumatism,nor inhectick fevers,or consumptions: first,by reason: of the ill success they are wont to have in using these waters. Secondly, because in them the parts are much weakened, and nature cannot throw off the glut of waters sent into the blood. In rheumatick persons the nervous juice degenerates from its crasis, and inclines to a sharpish nature, and is wont to be perverted by the fluid salts of the spaw-waters: as Dr. Willis well observes,' as for hecticks, * they are commonly of a fine texture of body, much distempered with 'heat, dryness,and costiveness; all which symptoms are rather in, 'creased by chalybeates, than abated:' wherefore the learned Dr. Willis, in his chapter of chalybeates, says,' that steel is not very pro'per in very hot and spirituous blood, nor where the bowels are of a 'hot temperament:' neither are these waters good, but rather hurtful to those who are in perfect health, according to Hippocrates's sentiments, who says, medkamenta non conveniunt sanis: medicaments are not convenient for sound and healthy persons. Moreover, they are judged not proper for women with child; because whatever provokes urine, as these waters do, provokes also the terms; and whatever provokes them in women, causes miscarriage j therefore not fit for them in this circumstance.

Old and ancient persons are not to be too bold in drinking these waters, because their ferments, and natural faculties, are much debilitated by decay of nature, and not sufficient to exert their function, in distributing these waters, which, if remaining in the body, and not carried off, suffocate the vital flames of the heart and arteries: wine therefore for them is most convenient. * For God has given wine as a physick-help against the morose austerity of age, that, by the moderate use thereof, old men may, in a manner, renew their lives, and forget their achs; even the habit of the mind, from a hardened condition, is become soft, as iron, by the help of fire, is made more tractable; whereupon wine is called lac senum, the old man's milk.

The method, which is to be observed in drinking these waters, is as followeth: First, to drink for three or four days every morning Epsom or North-Hall waters, to purge the body, and prepare it in order to Tunbridge; for, unless the first passages are cleansed, medicines, designed for any use, will be depraved by the filth residing in them. These purging waters may be drank to three or four pints, either raw or boiled, and altered with milk. This being done, drink of Tunbridge, walking gently to the fountain-head. + For waters are more pleasant and profitable, taken at the fountain-head; whence once removed, they lose their vivifick spirits, in which all vertue does reside; which afterwards no diligence can recover.

For, being impregnated with spirituous and volatile exhalations, they easily lose their vertue by the avolation of fugitive parts being carried at a distance: That they are embodied with such subtile parts, you may experience it sensibly, by putting a bottle half full of them, about sun-rising, to your eyes; and from thence you will perceive such emanations of effluviums to come analogous to those of orange-peel when squeesed, as will stimulate and irritate the tender tunicles of your eyes. This I have by tradition from a physician, who for many years frequented Tunbridge, and made great scrutiny into the nature and idioiyncrasia of these waters; yet this I know, that chalybeate waters in long deportation, or being some space of time out of the fountain, will not tinge with galls or oaken leaves, at least not so intensely as before; whence I deduce that, in carriage to some distance, or being long out of the fountain, they are divested •of their martial, and consequently medicinal power.*

* Pens enim virnim hominibus quasi auxilinm adveTsns sencctutii austeritatem pharmacnm largitus est, ut revivtscere videantur, & mtestitix oblivio capiat: atq;ipse animi habitus, mollis e duro factus ut ferrum igni imposilum, tractabilior fiat, unde vinum a nonnulu lac senum nominatur. Losgiui.

t Nam dulcius & utilius ex fonte bilmntur : delatx enim ex prupriis fontibus fieri non potest quin amittant vivificos itlns spiritus in quoq; omnis uvameiUi vis COnsistit, quos nullo poste& labore restitui potest. Jiacehiitl de Thermit.

They are to be drank gradually, and with leisure, not in great draughts, with little or no intermission, because they are chiefly prescribed to purify and keep in its due crasis the blood and nervous juice, to open obstructions, and strengthen the tone of the nervous jilexus: Now this they effect, by insinuating subtile and active particles, of a different state and origin, into the morbifick minera, conquering and subduing saline and irritative particles residing in the blood, and carrying some forth as prisoners, by urine. This mutual + contest, betwixt the combatants of chalybeates and their antagonist, cannot be expected to be at an end in haste, or in a short space of time; but after many attacks and several collisions, and, as I may say, broken pates: but precipitate drinking destroys all these intentions, and leaves no time for alteration, assimilation, or mortification of particles of a different nature and figure; wherefore it is better to J hasten slowly, and drink them leisurely, with due intervals.

Moreover, great draughts are generally held pernicious, destructive, and rather oppressing than alleviating nature; and, considering these waters are not vertuated so much by their quantity as quality Inherent in them, the body participates more of the latter, frequently drinking a little, than by pouring in a vast and stupendious quantity atone time,like Trieongius Mediolanensisy who drank three gallons at one draught, and from thence took his name.

The compass of time, wherein the waters are usually drank, is an hour, or an hour and a half, walking betwixt whiles moderately,^ till you look red, but not sweat, lest you divert them from the urinary passage to the periphery of the body, for the same matter goeth by sweat as by urine, and cause too great an effervescency in the blood.

The measure of time to continue the drinking of these waters, for good effect, is commonly a month, or six weeks: but, by the authority of Claudinus, and many other doctors, we may continue a steel course for the space of a year: Why not a fortiori, or much

• UimmqnoHqi quo magi» rlonnatnr a principio eo magls langunclt. t «W*X'"t ojwiKM P-aJfKt. F«stina lunte Hippes, nmne nimium nature iniraicmn, quo4 ye\% pu'Hlu«tm lit. lutum est, prs-crtim si ab uno ad aliud progredmlul. $ Ad nibomn »cd non ad sydorcm.

r»n<Jre, the use of these waters with as much safety and benefit, the/ feeing the most perfect course of steel; because here the elements of steel are in unconcrete and seminal principles, and display them. selves, as I before mentioned out of Dr. Sydenham: Supposing, in this administration, there be respect had to the patient's strengthj .disease, euphory, or well-bearing, temperament of the air, and other circumstances.

They are to be taken, gradually increasing and lessening the dose at the beginning, and before the end of the whole space of time appointed for the taking of them. In reference to the number of glasses, in my judgment, you may make it either odd, or even: tho' some philosophers, who are of opinion, that all things are composed of number, prefer the odd before the other, and attribute to it a great efficacy and perfection, especially in matters of physick: wherefore it is that many doctors prescribe always an odd pill, an odd draught, or drop, to be taken by their patients. For the perfection thereof, they alledge these following numbers. As seven planets, seven wonders of the world, nine muses, God is three and one ;* with many other examples, which, for brevity, I supersede, and let them abound in their own sense. If there fall rain, then the waters are not seasonable, because they will be too much diluted and weakened; but a little wet does no harm, but rather good, because it washes the salt in the + crannies and interstices of the earth into the fountain, and more intensely impregnates them. . n

To correct the crudities and rawness of the waters, and to accelerate their passing, carraway confects, and such like candied seeds masticated, are very good, and much commended, taken betwixt whiles: likewise a glass of small white-wine is a proper vehicle; and for all those who are inured to tobacco J nothing better than a pipe of it for this effect, taken betwixt whiles. Those, to whom it is offensive, taken alone, may add thereunto some tea leaves, or catechu, to qualify the ingratefulness thereof, and render it inoffensive, taken pipe-wise. This warms the stomach without mixing any heterogeneous body with the waters, that may obstruct their distribution and passing, for it rarefies the pores and meatus in order thereunto.

It is observed, that, in some, the waters, being drunk at the fountain-head, either by the inclemency of the weather, or indisposition of patient, will not easily pass, but remain too long in the body, to their great prejudice and detriment. To these persons my advice is, to drink them in their warm bed, without sleeping (which. .hinders all evacuation) for, as I said before, the gentle heat of bed dilates the passage, and consequently the distribution of the waters is much facilitated.

The regimen, which is observed in eating and drinking at those waters, is as followeth: first, eschew all gross and obstructive meats,

^as, pork, beef, duck, pudding, sausages; all fried victuals, as, eggs,.

*

t Nameroficiistmpareipuidet. t Vlrtna unit* Jaitior re ipsa dliperu.

$ Nulla salutifero prcstantior herba tabaco.
Interpose tuls intcrUum pncula funm.

« AnteriorContinuar »