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Vitamin Q: the book!

~ Thursday, September 09, 2004

A list of Parts of Living Creatures and Excrements suggested to be kept in apothecaries' shops circa 1640.

The fat, grease, or suet, of a Duck, Goose, Eel, Boar, Herron, Thymallows (if you know where to get it), Dog, Capon, Beaver, wild Cat, Stork, Coney, Horse, Hedge-hog, Hen, Man, Lion, Hare, Pike, or Jack (if they have any fat, I am persuaded 'tis worth twelve-pence a grain) Wolf, Mouse of the mountains, (if you can catch them) Pardal, Hog, Serpent, Badger, Grey or brock Fox, Vulture (if you can catch them) Album Graecum, Anglice, Dog's dung, the hucklebone of a Hare and a Hog, East and West Bezoar, Butter not salted and salted, stone taken out of a man's bladder, Vipers flesh, fresh Cheese, Castorium, white, yellow, and Virgin's Wax, the brain of Hares and Sparrows, Crabs' Claws, the Rennet of a Lamb, a Kid, a Hare, a Calf, and a Horse, the heart of a Bullock, a Stag, Hog, and a Wether, the horn of an Elk, a Hart, a Rhinoceros, an Unicorn, the skull of a man killed by a violent death, a Cockscomb, the tooth of a Boar, an Elephant, and a Sea-horse, Ivory, or Elephant's Tooth, the skin a Snake hath cast off, the gall of a Hawk, Bullock, a she Goat, a Hare, a Kite, a Hog, a Bull, a Bear, the cases of Silk-worms, the liver of a Wolf, and Otter, a Goat, Isinglass, the guts of a Wolf and a Fox, the milk of a she Ass, a she Goat, a woman, an Ewe, a Heifer, East and West Bezoar, the stone in the head of a Crab, and a Perch, if there be any stone in an Ox Gall, stone in the bladder of a Man, the jaw of a Pike or Jack, Pearls, the marrow of the leg of a Sheep, Ox, Goat, Stag, Calf, common and virgin Honey, Musk, Mummy, a Swallow's nest, Crabs eyes, the Omentum or call of a Lamb, Ram, Wether, Calf, the whites, yolks, and shells of Hen's Eggs, Emmet's Eggs, bone of a Stag's heart, an Ox leg, Ossepiae, the inner skin of a Hen's gizzard, the wool of Hares, the feathers of Partridges, that which Bees make at the entrance of the hive, the pizzle of a Stag, of a Bull, Fox Lungs, fasting spittle, the blood of a Pigeon, of a Cat, of a he Goat, of a Hare, of a Partridge, of a Sow, of a Bull, of a Badger, of a Snail, Silk, Whey, the Spermaceti, a Bullock's spleen, the skin a snake hath cast off, the excrements of a Goose, of a Dog, of a Goat, of Pigeons, of a stone Horse, of a Hen, of Swallows, of a Hog, of a Heifer, the ancle of a Hare, of a Sow, Cobwebs, Water thells, as Blatta Bazantia, Buccinae, Crabs, Cockles, Dentalis, Entalis, Mother of Pearl, Mytuli Purpurae, Os sepiae, Unbilious Marinus, the testicles of a Horse, Cock, the hoof of an Elk, of an Ass, a Bullock, of a Horse, of a Lyon, the urine of a Bear, of a she Goat.

Source: Culpeper

Some notes and queries:

thymallows - the grayling
pardal - probably leopard, but also a name for the sparrow
album graecum - dog dirt which has turned white due to exposure to air, used for throat complaints
anglice - meaning 'known in English as'
castorium - an oily substance secreted by beavers
bezoar - stone substance found in the stomachs of several large mammals
mummy - an ointment made from bitumen
emmet - ant
pizzle - penis
thells - presumably 'shells'

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