to all educated men, such as the fact that the alphabet

time:2023-11-29 04:27:01 source:Heartbreaker author:food

Though the beard be only made a distinction of sex, and sign of masculine heat by Ulmus,* yet the precocity and early growth thereof in him, was not to be liked in reference unto long life. Lewis, that virtuous but unfortunate king of Hungary, who lost his life at the battle of Mohacz,<9> was said to be born without a skin, to have bearded at fifteen, and to have shown some grey hairs about twenty; from whence the diviners conjectured that he would be spoiled of his kingdom, and have but a short life; but hairs make fallible predictions, and many temples early grey have outlived the psalmist's period.+ Hairs which have most amused me have not been in the face or head, but on the back, and not in men but children, as I long ago observed in that endemial distemper of children in Languedoc, called the mor- gellons,# wherein they critically break out with harsh hairs on their backs, which takes off the unquiet symp- toms of the disease, and delivers them from coughs and convulsions. The Egyptian mummies that I have seen, have had their mouths open, and somewhat gaping, which afford- eth a good opportunity to view and observe their teeth, wherein 'tis not easy to find any wanting or decayed; and therefore in Egypt, where one man practised but one operation, or the diseases but of single parts, it must needs be a barren profession to confine unto that of drawing of teeth, and to have been little better than tooth-

to all educated men, such as the fact that the alphabet

* Ulmus de usu barbae humanae. + The life of man is threescore and ten. # See Picotus de Rheumatismo.

to all educated men, such as the fact that the alphabet

drawer unto King Pyrrhus,* who had but two in his head.

to all educated men, such as the fact that the alphabet

How the banyans of India maintain the integrity of those parts, I find not particularly observed; who not- withstanding have an advantage of their preservation by abstaining from all flesh, and employing their teeth in such food unto which they may seem at first framed, from their figure and conformation; but sharp and corroding rheums had so early mouldered these rocks and hardest parts of his fabric, that a man might well conceive that his years were never like to double or twice tell over his teeth.+ Corruption had dealt more severely with them than sepulchral fires and smart flames with those of burnt bodies of old; for in the burnt fragments of urns which I have inquired into, although I seem to find few incisors or shearers, yet the dog teeth and grinders do notably resist those fires.

In the years of his childhood he had languished under the disease of his country, the rickets; after which, notwithstanding many have become strong and active men; but whether any have attained unto very great years, the disease is scarce so old as to afford good observation. Whether the children of the English plantations be subject unto the same infirmity, may be worth the observing. Whether lameness and halting do still increase among the inhabitants of Rovigno in Istria, I know not; yet scarce twenty years ago Monsieur du Loyr observed that a third part of that people halted; but too certain it is, that the rickets increaseth among us; the small-pox grows more pernicious than the great; the king's purse knows that the king's evil grows more common. Quartan agues are become no strangers in

* His upper jaw being solid, and without distinct rows of teeth. + Twice tell over his teeth, never live to threescore years.

Ireland; more common and mortal in England; and though the ancients gave that disease* very good words, yet now that bell+ makes no strange sound which rings out for the effects thereof.

Some think there were few consumptions in the old world, when men lived much upon milk; and that the ancient inhabitants of this island were less troubled with coughs when they went naked and slept in caves and woods, than men now in chambers and feather-beds. Plato will tell us, that there was no such disease as a catarrh in Homer's time, and that it was but new in Greece in his age. Polydore Virgil delivereth that pleurisies were rare in England, who lived but in the days of Henry the Eighth. Some will allow no diseases to be new, others think that many old ones are ceased: and that such which are esteemed new, will have but their time: however, the mercy of God hath scattered the great heap of diseases, and not loaded any one country with all: some may be new in one country which have been old in another. New discoveries of the earth discover new diseases: for besides the common swarm, there are endemial and local infirmities proper unto certain regions, which in the whole earth make no small number: and if Asia, Africa, and America, should bring in their list, Pandora's box would swell, and there must be a strange pathology.


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