The Anglo-Saxon Monk takes a look at a thirteenth-century medical recipe for painful and slow urination and decides to give it a miss.
Image: Raphanus sativus, the humble radish, cultivated in Europe in pre-Roman times, is a key component in a 13th-century medical recipe to counter strangury and dysuria. Click on image for picture credit.
I know that you're abundantly aware of my God-given gift of time-travelling. I only mention my transhistoricalness once more because I have a friend and spiritual brother who has a recurring health problem for which he cannot find a cure here in the eleventh century.
So when just this last week my fellow monk complained to me of his somatic tribulations, the obvious thing was for me to call upon the twenty-first-century experience of my alter ego, Dr Chris Monk. And so I made polite enquiry of him to ascertain if there was anything in his world that might just do the trick.
Well, beloved, I'm not sure I should have bothered! The rascal came up with the thirteenth-century treatment below, an item he unexpectedly came across whilst researching, on behalf of Rochester Cathedral, a manuscript about, of all things, monastic revenues.
You will soon gather the delicate nature of my fellow monk's condition once you read the recipe through. And you will soon comprehend, my blessed readers, that I had no intention whatsoever in carrying out this treatment for my ailing brother. I have my limits!
Image above: Custumale Roffense, Rochester Cathedral, 13th-century. The medical recipe to counter strangury and dysuria appears at the top of folio 3r. Image owned by the Dean and Chapter of Rochester Cathedral. To go to the facsimile click here.