Thursday, June 20, 2013

How to Care for Your Teeth, 13th century

"This is how to keep your teeth: gather the grains of a leek, burn them with henbane, and direct the smoke thereof to your teeth with a funnel, as if smoking a pipe." 
Regimen sanitatis Salernitanum (c. 13th century)

When you can't brush, fumigate! Recommended by nine out of ten medieval dentists.

Ask your dentist about a commemorative tooth-necklace.
BL, MS Royal 6 E.vi (c. 1360-75)

12 comments:

  1. What would someone in 13th century Europe normally smoke from a pipe?

    Odd little anachronism, and not in the original text.

    CAPUT LXXX. CONTRA DOLORE DENTIUM

    Sic dentes serva: poirorum collige grana,
    ne careas iure, cum iusquiamo simul ure:
    sique per embotum fumum cape dente remotum.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. True. I like to think the translator was providing a handy tip for anyone who couldn't get their hands on an embotum.

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    2. Probably opium or hashish, otherwise. Go to YouTube and search for "Fumeux fume" or "Puisque je suis fumeux", and you'll get a sense for Medieval pipe-smoking...

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