|A Tit-bit for the Bugs|
from the book Rowlandson the Caricaturist by Joseph Grego (1880)
A louse is a worm with many fete and it cometh out of the filthi and onclene skynne... To Withdryue them, the best is to washe oftentymes and to change oftentymes clene lynen.A plus to no longer living in the Middle Ages? Now we know that lice don't just pop out of our skin if we skip a bath. This wonderful line about fleas caught my eye:
On hearing the first cuckoo in spring, one should take earth from the ground where one's right foot is standing; this will have the property of driving all fleas from a house.(If that doesn't work on your flea infestation, talk to Pliny.)
As did this fascinating entry on lice:
The nature of the louse is that, on red hair they are red, on black hair, black, on white, white; and if one changes the hair, they will change colour.Chameleon lice!
I'll leave you with this charming depiction of a wife cleaning the lice from her husband's head...
|from the Hortus Sanitatis (1491)|
Busvine, J.R. Insects, Hygiene, and History The Athlone Press of the University of London, 1976.