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versarie's head, which glanced towards his friend, who heaving up his sore hand to save the blow, he was wounded on the back of his hand as he had been before within. It seems some strange constellation reigned then against him, that he should lose so much bloud by parting two such dear friends, who, had they been themselves, would have hazarded both their lives to have preserved his: but this involuntary effusion of bloud by them, prevented that which they sholde have drawn one from the other. For they, seeing Mr Howel's face besmeared with bloud, by heaving up his wounded hand, they both ran to embrace him; and, having searched his hurts, they bound up his hand with one of his garters, to close the veins which were cut, and bled abundantly. They brought him home, and sent for a surgeon. But this being heard at court, the king sent one of his own surgeons; for his majesty much affected the said Mr Howel.
"It was my chance to be lodged hard by him; and four or five days after, as I was making myself ready, he came to my house, and prayed me to view his wounds ;' for I understand,' said he, 'that you have extraordinary remedies on such occasions, and my surgeons apprehend some fear that it may grow to a gangrene, and so the hand must be cut off." In effect, his countenance discovered that he was in much pain, which he said was insupportable, in regard of the extreme inflammation. I told him I would willingly serve him; but if haply he knew the manner how I would cure him, without touching or seeing him, it may be he would not expose himself to my manner of curing, because he would think it, peradventure, either ineffectual or superstitious. He replied, ' The wonderful things which many have related unto me of your way of medicinement, makes me nothing doubt at all of its efficacy; and all that I have to say unto you, is comprehended in the Spanish proverb, Hagase el milagroy hagalo Mahoma—Let the miracle be done, though Mahomet do it.'
"I asked him then for any thing that had the blood upon it; so he presently sent for his garter, wherewith his hand was first bound: and as I called for a bason of water, as if I would wash my hands, I took a handful of powder of vitriol, which I had in my study, and presently dissolved it. As soon as the bloudy garter was brought me, I put it within the bason, observing, in the interim, what Mr Howel did, who stood talking with a gentleman in a corner of my chamber, not regarding at all what I was doing; but he started suddenly, as if he had found some strange alteration in himself. I asked him what he ailed? • I know not what ailes me; but I finde that I feel no more pain. Mcthinks that a pleasing kinde of freshnesse, as it were a wet cold napkin, did spread over my hand, which hath taken away the inflammation that tormented me before.' I replyed, * Since then that you feel already so good effect of my medicament, I advise you to cast away all your playsters; only keep the wound clean, and in a moderate temper betwixt heat and cold.' This was presently reported to the Duke of Buckingham, and a little after to the
king, who were both very curious to know the circumstance of the businesse, which was, that after dinner I took the garter out of the water, and put it to dry before a great fire. It was scarce dry, but Mr Howel's servant came running, that his master felt as much burning as ever he had done, if not more; for the heat was such as if his hand were 'tvvixt coles of fire. I answered, although that had happened at present, yet he should find ease in a short time; for I knew the reason of this new accident, and would provide accordingly; for his master should be free from that inflammation, it may be before he could possibly return to him; but in case he found no ease, I wished him to come presently back again; if not, he might forbear coming. Thereupon he went; and at the instant I did put again the garter into the water, thereupon he found his master without any pain at all. To be brief, there was no sense of pain afterward; but within five or six dayes the wounds were cicatrized, and entirely healed." P. 6.
The king (James VI.) obtained from Sir Kenelm the discovery of his secret, which he pretended had been taught him by a Carmelite friar, who had learned it in Armenia, or Persia. Let not the age of animal magnetism and metallic tractors smile at the sympathetic powder of Sir Kenelm Digby. Reginald Scott mentions the same mode of cure in these terms:
"And that which is more strange they can remedie anie
stranger with that verie sword wherewith they are wounded. Yea, and that which is beyond all admiration, if they stroke the sword upward with their fingers, the partie shall feele no pain; whereas, if they draw their fingers downwards, there* upon the partie wounded shall feele intolerable pain." I presume that the' success ascribed to the sympathetic mode of treatment might arise from the pains bestowed in washing the wound, and excluding the air, thus bringing on a cure by the first intention. It is introduced by Dryden in the Enchanted Island, a (very unnecessary) alteration of the Tempest t
Ariel. Anoint the sword which pierced him with this
Again, in scene 4th, Miranda enters with Hippolito's sword wrapt up:
Hip. O my wound pains me. [She unwraps the Sword.
Mir. I am come to ease you.
Hip. Alas, I feel the cold air come to me; My wound shoots worse than ever.
Mir. Does it still grieve you?
[She wipes and anoints the Sword.
Hip. Now, methinks, there's something laid just upon it.
Mir. Do you find no ease?
Hip. Yes, yes; upon the sudden all this pain Is leaving me. Sweet heaven, how I am eased 1
Note IX. Oh Penchryst glows a bale offire, And three are kindling on Priethaughswire.—P. 93. The Border beacons, from their number "and position, formed a sort of telegraphic communication with Edinburgh.—The
act of parliament 1455, c. 48, directs, that one bale, or faggot, shall be warning of the approach of the English in any manner; two bales, that they are coming indeed; four bales, blazing beside each other, that the enemy are in great force. "The same taikenings to be watched and maid at Eggerhope (Eggerstane) Castell, fra they se the fire of Hume, that they fire right swa. And in like manner on Sowtra Edge, sail se the fire of Eggerhope Castell, and mak taikening in like manner: And then may all Louthaine be warned, and in special the Castell of Edinburgh; and their four fires to be made in like manner, that they in Fyfe, and fra Striveling east, and the east part of Louthaine, and to Dunbar, all may se them, and come to the defense of the realme." These beacons (at least in latter times) were "a long and strong tree set up, with a long iron pole across the head of it, and an iron brander fixed on a stalk in the middle of it, for holding a tar-barrel."—Stevenson's History, vol. II. p. 701.
Note X. t Our kin, and clan, and friends, to raise.—P. 93. The speed with which the Borderers collected great bodies of horse, may be judged of from the following extract, when the subject of the rising was much less important than that supposed in the romance. It is taken from Carey's Memoirs:
"Upon the death of the old Lord Scroop, the queen gave (he west wardenry to his son, that had married my sister. He