ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Crazy Things Used To Cure Illness In The Middle Ages

Updated on April 1, 2013

A typical Plague doctor

In 1347 death reigned in Europe. A new disease appeared, and there was no telling who would catch it next. It was the Bubonic Plague and it created piles of bodies reaching the roof. The problem was that doctors knew nothing about the cause of the plague, or how to cure it. People believed that you could be infected by looking at a victim, breathing bad air or drinking water from a bad source.

For the plague, doctors recommended cures such as:

  • sitting in the sewers so that the stench of the plague is driven away by a more powerful stench
  • throwing herbs into the fire to increase the air quality
  • eating ten year old syrup
  • swallowing powder made out of emeralds (only for the rich)
  • killing all the cats and dogs in town
  • eating rat poison


Of course, the Black Plague is not the only disease doctors faced in those days.

From ancient times it was believed that the best thing to do in case of illness was to let the bad blood out of the body. Bloodletting was the most common medical practice performed by physicians from antiquity until the late 19th century, a span of almost 2,000 years! It was customary in the Middle Ages for someone to go to a barber and let him draw some blood. There was usually a big bowl of blood in the windows of barbershops.

Apart from blood-letting, there were also some interesting therapies:

  • If you have a toothache, you should wear the beak of a magpie around your neck.
  • If someone is considered crazy, the right thing to do is to drill a hole in their head so that the evil can go out.
  • If you have fungus, you should bathe in the urine of young boys
  • Joint pain was treated with a compress made from goat droppings, honey and rosemary
  • Memory loss was treated with ginger
  • Insomnia was treated with sugar syrup (which was also used for the dumb, people with freckles and snakebite victims )
  • Bruises were covered in a crème made from bacon and flour
  • When someone was unconscious they were awaken by breathing in the fumes from burnt feathers
  • If you have clogged nostrils, you should stuff them full of mustard and onions
  • Internal bleeding was treated by making the patient wear a dead toad around their neck

Surgical instrument case and instruments
Surgical instrument case and instruments

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • profile image

      mathias 

      4 years ago

      copied from horrible histories by terry deary

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)