Averters.

Averters.

     Averters and purgers must go together, as tending all to the same purpose, to divert this rebellious humour, and turn it another way. In this range, clysters and suppositories challenge a chief place, to draw this humour from the brain and heart, to the more ignoble parts. Some would have them still used a few days between, and those to be made with the boiled seeds of anise, fennel, and bastard saffron, hops, thyme, epithyme, mallows, fumitory, bugloss, polypody, senna, diasene, hamech, cassia, diacatholicon, hierologodium, oil of violets, sweet almonds, &c. For without question, a clyster opportunely used, cannot choose in this, as most other maladies, but to do very much good; Clysteres nutriunt, sometimes clysters nourish, as they may be prepared, as I was informed not long since by a learned lecture of our natural philosophy reader, which he handled by way of discourse, out of some other noted physicians. Such things as provoke urine most commend, but not sweat. Trincavellius consil. 16. cap. 1. in head-melancholy forbids it. P. Byarus and others approve frictions of the outward parts, and to bathe them with warm water. Instead of ordinary frictions, Cardan prescribes rubbing with nettles till they blister the skin, which likewise Basardus Visontinus so much magnifies.

     Sneezing, masticatories, and nasals are generally received. Montaltus c. 34. Hildesheim spicel. 3. fol. 136 and 238. give several receipts of all three. Hercules de Saxonia relates of an empiric in Venice "that had a strong water to purge by the mouth and nostrils, which he still used in head-melancholy, and would sell for no gold."

     To open months and haemorrhoids is very good physic, "If they have been formerly stopped." Faventinus would have them opened with horse-leeches, so would Hercul. de Sax. Julius Alexandrinus consil. 185. Scoltzii thinks aloes fitter: most approve horse-leeches in this case, to be applied to the forehead, nostrils, and other places.

     Montaltus cap. 29. out of Alexander and others, prescribes "cupping-glasses, and issues in the left thigh." Aretus lib. 7. cap. 5. Paulus Regolinus, Sylvius will have them without scarification, "applied to the shoulders and back, thighs and feet:" Montaltus cap. 34. "bids open an issue in the arm, or hinder part of the head." Piso enjoins ligatures, frictions, suppositories, and cupping-glasses, still without scarification, and the rest.

     Cauteries and hot irons are to be used "in the suture of the crown, and the seared or ulcerated place suffered to run a good while. 'Tis not amiss to bore the skull with an instrument, to let out the fuliginous vapours." Sallus. Salvianus de re medic. lib. 2. cap. 1. "because this humour hardly yields to other physic, would have the leg cauterised, or the left leg, below the knee, and the head bored in two or three places," for that it much avails to the exhalation of the vapours; "I saw" (saith he) "a melancholy man at Rome, that by no remedies could be healed, but when by chance he was wounded in the head, and the skull broken, he was excellently cured." Another, to the admiration of the beholders, "breaking his head with a fall from on high, was instantly recovered of his dotage." Gordonius cap. 13. part. 2. would have these cauteries tried last, when no other physic will serve. "The head to be shaved and bored to let out fumes, which without doubt will do much good. I saw a melancholy man wounded in the head with a sword, his brainpan broken; so long as the wound was open he was well, but when his wound was healed, his dotage returned again." But Alexander Messaria a professor in Padua, lib. 1. pract. med. cap. 21. de melanchol. will allow no cauteries at all, 'tis too stiff a humour and too thick as he holds, to be so evaporated.

     Guianerius c. 8. Tract. 15. cured a nobleman in Savoy, by boring alone, "leaving the hole open a month together," by means of which, after two years' melancholy and madness, he was delivered. All approve of this remedy in the suture of the crown; but Arculanus would have the cautery to be made with gold. In many other parts, these cauteries are prescribed for melancholy men, as in the thighs, (Mercurialis consil. 86.) arms, legs. Idem consil. 6. & 19. & 25. Montanus 86. Rodericus a Fonseca tom. 2. cousult. 84. pro hypochond. coxa dextra, &c., but most in the head, "if other physic will do no good."

 

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