Tag Archives: Galen

A bad hair day

I have had a bad hair month – quite literally. I have been suffering from an extremely itchy scalp, covered in hives. Fortunately this is now calming down, but I am left wondering what caused such a severe allergic reaction. … Continue reading

Posted in Ancient History, Cosmetics, History of medicine | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

A perfume of Syria

As the crisis in Syria and the Middle East intensifies, and as refugees reach Europe in their thousands, Big Boy T (aged 8) has been asking difficult questions. For instance, he asked me how I could admire Hadrian’s Wall but … Continue reading

Posted in Ancient History, Cosmetics, History | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

Autumn song

I have two favourite times of year: the first is when the cherries are in bloom; and the second, which has just come to an end, is the beginning of the autumn, when the blackberry brambles are in fruit. The … Continue reading

Posted in Food history, History of medicine | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

The hair of the dog

 I have a new textual crush. I have become totally enamoured with the Geoponika (literally, Agricultural Stuff), a Byzantine tenth-century compilation of agronomical advice. It is full of fun recipes and precepts. While other ancient agronomical authors might edit out what … Continue reading

Posted in History of magic, History of medicine, Homemade remedies | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Of milk and honey

There hardly goes a week without a newsreport on breatsmilk and/or breastfeeding. This week we are told that giving some formula during the first few days of a baby’s life will boost chances of breastfeeding for the recommended six-month period. … Continue reading

Posted in History of gynaecology, History of medicine, History of veterinary medicine | Tagged , , , , | 4 Comments

Plus ça change…

Women who choose never to breastfeed sometimes do so for aesthetic reasons: breastfeeding, they argue, will damage their beautiful bosom. Does breastfeeding damage boobs? The jury is out on this one. Breastfeeding advocates maintain that this is one of the … Continue reading

Posted in Children's History, Cosmetics, History of gynaecology, History of medicine, History of veterinary medicine | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Eat your heart out

At the risk of being too predictable, this week, for Valentine’s day, I bring you some ancient aphrodisiac recipes. I am not really one for celebrating the Saint of Love, and reading some of the recipes I have come across … Continue reading

Posted in Cosmetics, History of gynaecology, History of magic, History of medicine, History of veterinary medicine | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments