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Table Of Contents

The Worm beneath the Tongue
To Worm or Not to Worm
Te Worm Has Turned—into a Pustule!
Te Worm, Drunkards, and the Zombie Apocalypse
Animal Simples
Chickens for Snakebites
Cured by the Serpent’s Tooth?
Mysteries of the Madstone
Gems and Stones of Potent Virtue
Toadstones, Snakestones, and Bezoars
From Snakestones to Madstones
Mr. Lincoln Goes to Terre Haute
Te Ormskirk Medicine
Te Tonquin Cure
Spurious Rabies: Spontaneous and Imagined
Spontaneous Rabies
Spontaneity Redivivus?
Imagined Rabies
The Non-Existent Disease
A Dismal Collection of Notices
Smothering before the Law
Human Barks and Bites
(Rabid?) Creatures of the Night
Arboreal Exhalations
Death by Breath
Te Sorb Tree and Its Dangerous Ilk
Afterword: Friends or Foes?
Appendix: Charms against the Mad Dog’s Bite
Bibliography
Index
P. 1
The Bearer of Crazed and Venomous Fangs

The Bearer of Crazed and Venomous Fangs

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For centuries prior to the development of an effective vaccination against rabies, the bite of a “mad” dog was linked to a horrific ailment marked by convulsions, an utter dread of swallowing liquids, uncontrollable thrashing, and even the tendency to bark and attempt to bite others—a horrid prelude to an agonizing death.

Drawing on learned theories of medical practitioners and beliefs of the common people, The Bearer of Crazed and Venomous Fangs investigates the cultural mythology of the ailment known today as rabies. By exploring the cultural history of science, traditional belief, and folk medicine, it reveals the popular myths and learned delusions that came to define the disease. Among the arresting topics explored are the attribution of rabies to a worm beneath the tongue, the notion that the disease could arise spontaneously, the idea that it could be “cured” by the application to the wound of special stones or animal parts, and, if all else failed, the treatment of it by the suffocation of the human victim.

Rich in detail and brimming with historical intrigue, The Bearer of Crazed and Venomous Fangs engages students of medicine and the history of science, veterinary studies, folklore, psychology, and anyone interested in how mankind’s best friend could be thought of as its cruelest, fiercest enemy.

For centuries prior to the development of an effective vaccination against rabies, the bite of a “mad” dog was linked to a horrific ailment marked by convulsions, an utter dread of swallowing liquids, uncontrollable thrashing, and even the tendency to bark and attempt to bite others—a horrid prelude to an agonizing death.

Drawing on learned theories of medical practitioners and beliefs of the common people, The Bearer of Crazed and Venomous Fangs investigates the cultural mythology of the ailment known today as rabies. By exploring the cultural history of science, traditional belief, and folk medicine, it reveals the popular myths and learned delusions that came to define the disease. Among the arresting topics explored are the attribution of rabies to a worm beneath the tongue, the notion that the disease could arise spontaneously, the idea that it could be “cured” by the application to the wound of special stones or animal parts, and, if all else failed, the treatment of it by the suffocation of the human victim.

Rich in detail and brimming with historical intrigue, The Bearer of Crazed and Venomous Fangs engages students of medicine and the history of science, veterinary studies, folklore, psychology, and anyone interested in how mankind’s best friend could be thought of as its cruelest, fiercest enemy.

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Publish date: Mar 10, 2014
Added to Scribd: Mar 13, 2014
Copyright:Traditional Copyright: All rights reservedISBN:9781491718940
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9781491718940

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