Angels

These cases have been selected and transcribed by Ofer Hadass, whose book Medicine, Religion, and Magic in Early Stuart England: Richard Napier’s Medical Practice was published by Penn State University Press in 2018.

Case 37896

John Mobs of Wolverton, 60 years. Tuesday 23 April 1611, 7.15 am. New Ague. Is sore.[Chart.]
Michael [Crossed out: Will die about 2 or 3 days hence.] He did not die but mended.
Very hot, was let blood. Very costive. Cannot eat anything nor sleep. It is of Venus in Pisces, the Moon separating from Jupiter in Gemini.
[Treatment information: Diacatholocon five drams, senae, rhubarb, of each one scruple, decoctum commune four ounces.]
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Case 37871

John Mobs of Wolverton, 53 years. Friday 19 April, 1611, 6[.30] am.
[Chart.]
Michael: He will die shortly.
New ague. 3 days kept his bed. Yesterday very ill.
Asariel: He is dead.
[Treatment information: Stibium three grams, Conserve Rosarum one ounce.]
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Case 38229

Mrs Cayno craves a vomit. Monday [10] June, 1611, 11.45 am.
[Treatment: Tab[let], 4d [weight].]
Michael: It will do her good.
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Case 37953

Old Mrs Slid of Olney, 74 years. Friday 26 April 1611, 8.45 am.
[In margin] Unspecified angel: It will help her.
Red purples & knobs in her fingers & in her face with great heat & dries.
[Treatment information: Maioran one ounce, diacatholocon half an ounce, syrupi de 5 radicibus one ounce, decoctum commune one ounce, fumaria, plantago, of each one ounce.]
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Case 37949

Mr John Miles of Watnatstone, 32 years. Friday 26 April 1611, 6.00 am.
[In chart] Wind colic with stone.
It is of Venus in Pisces in the 11th house, the Moon separating from a square with the Sun in the 12th house in Taurus. Head back & belly. Stone colic. Very slimy gravellish stuff.
[Treatment information: Diaphænicon half an ounce, electuary rosarum two drams, pulvis hollandi two scruples, syrupi de 5 radicibus one ounce, saxifraga, chamomile, of each one ounce, decoctum commune one ounce, cephalic eight ounces.]
Unspecified angel: It will help him.
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Case 37943

John Estwood of Groondon, 58 years. Thursday 25 April 1611, 2.15 pm.
[Chart.]
A spiry man. Stuffed in his chest & has a cough & would wane if he could & has a stitch under his side. Hot & sweats. Very thirsty & dry.
[In margin] Unspecified angel: Not to be cured, will die of it.
An aguish water.
[Treatment information: Diaphænicon three ounces, diacatholocon three ounces, decoctum commune four ounces.]
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Case 37939

Thomas Dob of Olney, 55 years. Thursday 25 April 1611, 11.39 am.
An extreme cough 6 years & spits and runs much ill stuff & never well. Short winded. Has taken elacampane, aniseed, pounded with aniseed, hyssop & raisins together, wormwood, hyssop boiled in drink. Much the better for a purge I gave him.
[Treatment information: diaphænicon six ounces, sarsaparilla half an ounce, decoctum commune three ounces, centaury one ounce.]
Michael: He will mend.
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Case 37899

Thomas Tarry of Gothurst Joyner, 50 years. Tuesday 23 April 1611, 7.30 am
Very extreme hot & dry.
[Treatment information: Aqua fragaria, acetosa, of each half [an ounce], sal prunella one ounce, conserve rosarum, barberis, of each one ounce, syrupus acetosus.]
Michael: He will by god’s grace mend.
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Case 37895

Robert Nichols of this town, 65 years. Monday 22 April 1611, 6.15 pm.
[Chart.]
Unspecified angel: He will mend by gods help.
It is of Mars in Cancer. Complains of short-wind dryness. Belly & left side. Voids much phlegm & has been so long & pines in his bed & can eat very little & cannot go. Best when he stands still.
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Case 37893

William Grove of Buckingham, 21 years. Monday 22 April 1611, 11 am.
[Chart.]
Lame a twelvemonth. Has gone almost a year with crutches. Cannot sit down yet can in his bed hold out his leg. It is of Saturn in Pisces, moon separating from trine with Sun. Has 2 or 3 running holes. Very much pained & wasted.
[Treatment information: Confectio hamech six drams, decoctum commune four ounces, alhandal one scruple.]
Unspecified angel: Will not be cured.
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Case 37886

Goody Fowler of Newport, 50 years. Sunday 21 April 1611, 5.30 pm.
[In chart] A dropsy.
Unknown angel: Will die of it, not likely to be cured.
[Astrology: Saturn approaching trine with Mars, Saturn approaching trine with Mercury, Mars approaching sextile with Mercury, Jupiter approaching sextile with the Sun, Jupiter approaching a sextile with Mercury, Sun approaching a conjunction with Mercury, Saturn approaching a square with Mercury, Mars approaching a square with Venus, May 16.]
First she was sick of an Ague 13 weeks since. & About 10 weeks hence, she began to swell first in her belly which is [illeg.] & grows greater & greater & very exceeding hard. & her legs do swell at all times this fortnight & her face & other limbs. Pine & consume.
[Treatment information: juice of flower de luce. a little egg full with sugar, lily wholes baked with her band & powdered & mixed with anise seeds or cumin seeds. Suppositories with mice dung dry, asarabacca.]
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Case 37877

Mr Faldoe of Goldington, 25 years. Friday 19 April 1611, 11.30 am.
Had the fore part with pain & a running humour in his share. Been most in his bed & least in stirring. Exceedingly faint & feeble. A purge, pills, let blood & bathing & stimulations & cordials every morning. Consumpt. Weeps. Faint & feeble than before. His pain by fits stronger than before & very sharp. Back weak. Had a clyster made in his neck which voided almost a porringer of water. & Speaks ill since his physic stuttering more than before & feels a pain overthwart his stomach. Scurfing powder did him much good of helleborus albus.
Michael: I should not meddle with him.
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Case 37875

William Walton of Neyther Winchington, 8 years. Friday 19 April 1611, 9.45 am. Twelfth night being Wednesday about 10.30 pm his father came to me for physic to my house.
A leaprous scurf. A diet drink & bath.
[Treatment information: Theriaca londinensis half an ounce, andromachi two ounces, conserve rosarum, bittan one ounce, a bath with [herbs?].]
Michael will show me what course I shall take with him when his father comes.
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Case 37869

Elizabeth Watts a butchers wife of Stonystratford, 44 years. Thursday 18 April 1611, 2.15 pm.
Extreme sick of this new ague. On Sunday so sick as they thought she should die. Very light headed & is very costive. Twice in a week.
[Left margin, right margin] Asariel: She is dead.
[Treatment information: Diacatholocon, diaphænicon, of each three ounces, rhubarb one scruple, decoctum commune three ounces, chicoria one ounce.]
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Case 37866

Mrs Dorothy Rawlings of Stambridge, 31 years. Thursday 18 April 1611, 10.30 am.
[Chart.]
[Left margin] Michael: She will mend.
Much troubled after cold taken in her chest which makes her by fits to vomit full of rheum & toothache. Did pull her tooth. Has been much troubled with often swooning & vomiting. The mother & that 8 years since that is gone & now mended. Took physic of me 8 years since & she was quick & knew it not. Had them 5 weeks hence but 3 or 4 days but not so well as heretofore. A tall & a slender woman full of choler. Posset drink made with pennyroyal & did sweat over a close stool & so went to bed. It is of Saturn in Pisces in the 8th house.
[Treatment information: Diaphænicon, electuarium rosarum, of each three ounces, hiera picra half an ounce, syrupi de 5 radicibus two ounces.]
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Case 38692

Barbara Hopkins of Pitchlie, 28 years. Wednesday 11 September 1611, 3.15 pm.
Complains most of her belly with a gripping ever since Whitsuntide. Most by fits. Colic.
[Name of angel in binding]: Will mend by god’s grace.
[Treatment information: Diaphænicon five drams, pulvis hiera picra and sancti, of each half an ounce, saxifraga, chamomile, of each one ounce, decoction two ounces.] Quaerit an sit gravida [asks whether pregnant].
Raphael: Is not.
[Chart.]
Fears consumption.
[Astrology.]
[Treatment information: Conserve Rosarum one and a half ounces, theriaca [illeg.] half an ounce, diagalangae one scruple, theriaca Andromachi half a dram.]
[Right column] Troubled with the wind colic. Faint & short winded.
Michael: She is but a week gone with child & will die about 24 weeks hence.
Thinks herself not to be with child. If it were so, she thinks that she is near her time of quickening. Was very lame that she could not go nor rest for the extremity of pain & ache. Feels a rumbling in her belly. Is lame still but a little mends. Has had an extreme scouring a great while.
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Case 38616

Arthur Nicholas of Stonystratford, 3 years. Friday 30 August 1611, 9.00 am.
[Chart.]
Very sick. Head chest side. Casts & scours.
[Treatment information: Syrupi absynthii one ounce, [illeg.] one scruple, aqua carduus one ounce.]
Asariel, Michael: It will do her good.
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Case 38620

Mr Salisbury, August 30, Friday 11.30 am, 1611. Salt rheum. Sore water.
[Chart.]
A stitch under his left side. A burning in his reins. Urine good. It is of Jupiter in Leo and moon in Libra approaching sextile with Venus.
[Treatment information: Diaphænicon, electuarium rosarum, of each three ounces, syrupi de 5 radicibus one ounce.]
Michael: It will do him good.
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Case 38479

Goody Algate, a succourless woman, at great Gyddin in Huntingdonshire, 47 years. Saturday 27 July 1611, 9.00 am. & has a great charge of children. Buried her husband at beginning of Lent & she has swelled in her left arm & hand & cannot lift it up.
[Left margin] Somewhat mopish.
A fortnight afore Easter & has continued ever since & has no feel in it & the use of her legs is gone from her & cannot get her living & is mopish. Never had them [menses] since Shrovetide & has the whites often. Had her face swelled. She will mend for the time but will fall back again.
[Treatment information: Confectio hamech, diaphænicon, of each three drams, electuarium rosarum one dram, decoction three ounces, pilulae cochiae one dram, alhandal, diagridium, of each three grams, ox gall, neatsfoot oil, aqua vitae boiled.]
[Left] Asariel: will not be cured.
Had a boil & put a cerecloth to it & that drew up the humours.
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Case 38372

John Nash of Aldnum 4 miles beyond St Albans, 33 years. Monday 1 July 1611, 2.30 pm. Right foot in the instep & under the ankles mightily swelled. The skin was broken but it is in a manner whole. Married 8 years.
[Chart.]
Raphael: Give him the purging diet drink in six gallons about Michaelmas.
Mars approaches sextile with Venus. Leg swelled. His foot so sore ever since Christmas that he could not go but with crutches. He never took the diet drink. Had diverse poultices & cerecloths but never did him good. It lay first in his back before it fell into his foot.
Asariel: Will not be helped.
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Case 38269

Oliver Carter of Kimolton, 60 years. Thursday 13 June 1611, 9.38 am. Troubled with the stone which has made an ulcer by fretting.
Unspecified angel: It may be cured.
[In chart] The stone, casting an ulcer in the yard.
[Treatment information: Benedicta laxat, electuary rosarum, of each three ounces, diacatholocon one ounce, syrupi de 5 radicibus one ounce, aqua saxifraga, aqua raphani, of each one and a half ounces, hiera picra six ounces, a formulation of mallows & chamomile with a [illeg.]]
He cannot make water but with great pain & little at a time. Ill ever since Easter by fits. An ulcer bred in the yard. Letting of blood stays the rheum & all other humors that bred the stone.
Michael: This course by god’s grace will help others & him also.
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Case 38232

Nicholas Campion of Wavendon, 60 years, troubled with the chest worms. Monday 10 June 1611, 2.50 pm.
[Treatment information: Conserve absynthii two ounces, hiera picra simple one & a half drams.]
Raphael: this will help him.
Raphael: he will do good.
Michael: it will do him good by god’s grace.
Edition and image for CASE38232

Case 38226

Mrs Cordell of the parish of Rudgden, 40 years. Monday 10 June 1611, 11.30 am.
Has sent me 3 rabbits. Nescit an sit gravida [does not know if she is pregnant].
Raphael: No est gravida [she is not pregnant].
Michael: Purge, let blood.
A water full of whites & white gravel.
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Case 38222

Mrs Douglas Foster of Carington, 26 years. Monday 10 June 1611, 10.00 am. [Above: Mrs Elisabeth Blundell wrote in her behalf.] The Lord’s name be blessed.
[In chart] She is with child.
[Left margin] Michael, Rafael: Seems that now no body would take her to be with child. Seems small.
Supposes herself to be with child. Now past her reckoning 3 weeks & has throws gripping in her belly. 3 months troubled with the terms. Mostly feels nothing stirring & therefore wants to know if she is pregnant. If not would take something to break them. It is of Saturn Lord of the 6th & 5th houses retrograde. Troubled with the reds & whites.
[Right margin] Michael: Will mend by god’s grace.
[Treatment information: Conserve Rosarum two ounces, trochisci de terra sigillata one & a half scruple, sanguis draconis one scruple, diascordium one scruple {illegible} one scruple, piluae coralliis one scruple.]
Mrs Blundel’s midwife does not take her to be with child. Nor can feel anything if she be. She is very small as ever one saw.
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Case 37926

Joan Hawkins of Alderton, 48 years. Thursday 25 April 1611, 9.30 am.
18 weeks since had a child. Since troubled with asthma. Can scarce take her breath & has a cough. Did so times. Has been let blood in the right leg. Urine good. Fears a consumption. Not sick but by fits.
[Treatment information: Tab[let] 4½d [weight].]
Michael, Asariel: She will die.
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Case 38693

Goody Morton of Aspley, 44 years. Wednesday 11 September 1611, 1.20 pm. Very weak.
Swelled in her body & legs as much as her body can hold. A dropsy. Never had her health. Has laid sick a month & for a week mightily swelled. Keeps her bed & cannot rest.
[Treatment information: Artemis purge four grams, conserve rosarum half an ounce, artemis & diaphænicon eighteen grams, let blood [from the] arm.]
Michael: It shall do her good for the time but she will relapse
Raphael: Troubled with the wind colic
Faint & short-winded.
Edition and image for CASE38693