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Wine, even when it has lost its vinous properties, still retains some medicinal virtues. Vinegar possesses cooling properties in the very highest degree, and is no less efficacious as a resolvent; it has the property, too, of effervescing,1 when poured upon the ground. We have frequently had occasion, and shall again have occasion, to mention the various medicinal compositions in which it forms an ingredient. Taken by itself it dispels nausea and arrests hiccup, and if smelt at, it will prevent sneezing: retained in the mouth, it prevents a person from being inconvenienced by the heat2 of the bath. It is used as a beverage also, in combination with water,3 and employed as a gargle, it is found by many to be very wholesome to the stomach, particularly convalescents and persons suffering from sun-stroke; used as a fomentation, too, this mixture is extremely beneficial to the eyes. Vinegar is used remedially when a leech has been swallowed;4 and it has the property of healing leprous sores,5 scorbutic eruptions, running ulcers, wounds inflicted by dogs, scorpions, and scolopendræ, and the bite of the shrew-mouse. It is good, too, as a preventive of the itching sensations produced by the venom of all stinging animals, and as an antidote to the bite or the millepede.

Applied warm in a sponge, in the proportion of three sextarii to two ounces of sulphur or a bunch of hyssop, vinegar is a remedy for maladies of the fundament. To arrest the hemorrhage which ensues upon the operation6 of lithotomy, and, indeed, all other operations of a similar nature, it is usual to apply vinegar in a sponge, and at the same time to administer it internally in doses of two cyathi, the very strongest possible being employed. Vinegar has the effect also of dissolving coagulated blood; for the cure of lichens, it is used both internally and externally. Used as an injection, it arrests looseness of the bowels and fluxes of the intestines; it is similarly employed, too, for procidence of the rectum and uterus.

Vinegar acts as a cure for inveterate coughs, defluxions of the throat, hardness of breathing, and looseness of the teeth: but it acts injuriously upon the bladder and the sinews, when relaxed. Medical men were for a long time in ignorance how beneficial vinegar is for the sting of the asp; for it was only recently that a man, while carrying a bladder7 of vinegar, happening to be stung by an asp upon which he trod, found to his surprise that whenever he put down the bladder he felt the sting, but that when he took it up again, he seemed as though he had never been hurt; a circumstance which at once suggested to him the remedial properties of the vinegar, upon drinking some of which he experienced a cure. It is with vinegar, too, and nothing else, that persons rinse the mouth after sucking the poison from a wound. This liquid, in fact, exercises a predominance not only upon various articles of food, but upon many other substances as well. Poured upon rocks in con- siderable quantities, it has the effect of splitting8 them, when the action of fire alone has been unable to produce any effect thereon. As a seasoning, too, there is no kind that is more agreeable than vinegar, or that has a greater tendency to heighten the flavour of food. When it is employed for this purpose, its extreme tartness is modified with burnt bread or wine, or else it is heightened by the addition of pepper, and of laser;9 in all cases, too, salt modifies its strength.

While speaking of vinegar, we must not omit to mention a very remarkable case in connexion with it: in the latter years of his life, M. Agrippa was dreadfully afflicted with gout, so much so, in fact, that he was quite unable to endure the tor- ments to which he was subjected. Upon this, guided by the ominous advice of one of his medical attendants, though un- known to Augustus, at the moment of an extremely severe attack he plunged his legs into hot vinegar, content to pur- chase exemption from such cruel torments as he suffered, if even at the price of all use and sensation in those limbs, * * * * *.10

1 The vinegar of the present day does not appear to have any such property.

2 Celsus says the same thing, B, i. c. 3.

3 "Posca," or vinegar and water, sometimes mixed with eggs, was the common drink of the lower classes at Rome, and of the soldiers when on service.

4 There is little doubt that it would be advantageous to employ vinegar in such a case; the animal would be compelled to withdraw its hold, and vomiting would be facilitated. Strong salt and water, Fée thinks, would be still more efficacious.

5 It would be of no use whatever, Fée thinks, in any of these cases.

6 An operation which, though known to the Greeks and Romans, appears to have been completely lost sight of in the middle ages.

7 Or leather bag, "utrem."

8 See B. xxx, c. 21. From Livy and Plutarch we learn that Hannibal employed this method of splitting the rocks when making his way across the Alps. Fée, at considerable length, disputes the credibility of this account, and thinks it only a wonderful story invented by the Romans to account for their defeat by Hannibal.

9 See B. xix. c. 5.

10 Sillig has little doubt that this passage is incomplete, and that the end of it should be to the effect, "the result of which was, that he was effectually cured." A very similar story is related of Servius Clodius, a Roman knight, in B. xxv. c. 7.

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