Pliny the Elder, Natural History

LCL 418: 148-149


Pliny: Natural History

aut fimum ex his cum melle decoctum, fel verrinum, urina suum in lana inposita. femina adteri adurique equitatu notum est. utilissimum est ad omnes inde causas spumam equi ex ore inguinibus inlinere. inguina et ex ulcerum causa intumescunt. remedio sunt equi saetae tres totidem nodis alligatae intra ulcus.


LXII. Podagris medetur ursinus adips taurinumque sebum pari pondere et cerae. addunt quidam hypocisthidem et gallam. alii hircinum praeferunt sebum cum fimo caprae et croco, sinapi, item1 caulibus hederae tritis ac perdicio vel flore cucumeris silvestris. 220item bovis fimum cum aceti faece magnificant et vituli qui nondum herbam gustaverit fimum aut per se sanguinem tauri, vulpem decoctam vivam donec ossa tantum restent, lupumve vivum oleo cerati modo incoctum, sebum hircinum cum helxines parte aequa, sinapis tertia, fimi caprini cinerem cum axungia. quin et ischiadicos uri sub pollicibus pedum eo fimo fervente utilissime tradunt, articulorumque vitiis fel ursinum utilissimum esse et pedes leporis adalligatos, podagras quidem mitigari pede leporis viventi absciso, 221si quis secum adsidue habeat. perniones ursinus adips rimasque pedum omnes sarcit, efficacius alumine addito, sebum caprinum, dentium equi farina, aprunum vel suillum fel cum adipe, pulmo inpositus, etsi subtriti sint contunsive offensatione, si vero adusti frigore, leporini pili cinis, eiusdem pulmo contusis dissectus



of he-goats boiled down in water or their dung boiled down with honey, a boar’s gall, and a pigs’ urine applied on wool. It is well known that riding on a horse chafes and galls the inner side of the thighs; most useful for all such troubles is to rub on the groin the foam from the mouth of a horse. The groin also swells because of sores; the remedy is to tie within the sore three horse hairs with three knots.

LXII. Gout is benefited by bear’s grease and bullFor gout and other complaints. suet with an equal weight of wax as well; to which some add hypocisthis and gall nut. Others prefer he-goat suet with the dung of a she-goat and with saffron, mustard,a pounded stalks of ivy, and perdicium or the blossom of wild cucumber. Highly praised also is ox dung with lees of vinegar and the dung of a calf that has not yet tasted grass, or, by itself, the blood of a bull, a fox boiled down alive until only the bones remain, or a wolf boiled alive in oil as though to make a wax-salve, he-goat’s suet with an equal quantity of helxine, a third part of mustard, calcined goat’s dung and axle-grease. Moreover, to put a burning-hot poultice of this dung under the big toes is said to be excellent for sciatica, and bear’s gall very useful for diseases of the joints, as are also the feet of a hare worn as an amulet, while gouty pains are alleviated by a hare’s foot, cut off from the living animal, if the patient carries it about continuously on the person. Chilblains and all chaps on the feet are healed by bear’s grease, more efficaciously with the addition of alum, by goat suet, by a horse’s teeth ground to powder, by the gall and fat of a wild boar or pig, by the lung applied to them even if they are chafed or broken by a knock, but if they are frost bites, by a hare’s fur reduced to ash; if they are broken,

DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.pliny_elder-natural_history.1938