Dawson - Medical Texts 4
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<ul><li><p>7/28/2019 Dawson - Medical Texts 4</p><p> 1/5</p><p>Egypt Exploration Society</p><p>Studies in the Egyptian Medical Texts: IV (Continued)Author(s): Warren R. DawsonSource: The Journal of Egyptian Archaeology, Vol. 20, No. 3/4 (Nov., 1934), pp. 185-188Published by: Egypt Exploration SocietyStable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3854738</p><p>Accessed: 22/02/2009 19:51</p><p>Your use of the JSTOR archive indicates your acceptance of JSTOR's Terms and Conditions of Use, available at</p><p>http://www.jstor.org/page/info/about/policies/terms.jsp. JSTOR's Terms and Conditions of Use provides, in part, that unless</p><p>you have obtained prior permission, you may not download an entire issue of a journal or multiple copies of articles, and you</p><p>may use content in the JSTOR archive only for your personal, non-commercial use.</p><p>Please contact the publisher regarding any further use of this work. 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For more information about JSTOR, please contact email@example.com.</p><p>Egypt Exploration Society is collaborating with JSTOR to digitize, preserve and extend access to The Journal</p><p>of Egyptian Archaeology.</p><p>http://www.jstor.org</p>http://www.jstor.org/stable/3854738?origin=JSTOR-pdfhttp://www.jstor.org/page/info/about/policies/terms.jsphttp://www.jstor.org/action/showPublisher?publisherCode=eeshttp://www.jstor.org/action/showPublisher?publisherCode=eeshttp://www.jstor.org/page/info/about/policies/terms.jsphttp://www.jstor.org/stable/3854738?origin=JSTOR-pdf</li><li><p>7/28/2019 Dawson - Medical Texts 4</p><p> 2/5</p><p>STUDIES IN THE EGYPTIAN MEDICAL TEXTS-IVBY WARREN R. DAWSON(Continued from Journal, xx, 41-6)15. The affection called Tq,'</p><p>THISword has generally been translated "swelling" and sometimes "boil", "ulcer" or thelike, but I believe it to mean a sharp or acute pain, popularly a."shooting pain".B. Ebbell (A.Z., LXIII, 115) came somewhat nearer the truth when he proposed"rheumatism" as the meaning of gtt, but his rendering does not fully account for all theoccurrences of the word in the medical texts, although it may be appropriate to some fewof them. The following are the instances of the word in the medical papyri:1. E 51. 15 (294). "Beginning of the remedies for reducing (Frm q g) gtt n the groins."An external remedy in which a plant (which I shall attempt to identify in ? 17) is ap-</p><p>plied to the affected region, "then it (the pain) subsidesimmediately ". There s a dupli-cate of this remedyin H 3.4 (35),where i is corruptly written for stt. Perhaps hernia.2. E 51. 19 (295). For gtt in the neck which causes pain when the head is inclined. Externalremedy. This oft-quoted passage is generally understood to refer to boils, but it isclearly a case of fibrositis, or "stiff-neck".3. E 52. 6 (296). Here gttis a symptom of some stomach trouble which makes the abdomenrigid. There is a duplicate in E 25. 3 (102), where gtt has wrongly the additionaldeterminative Z, doubtless borrowed from q'-t . In both passages gtt isqualified as e m</p></li><li><p>7/28/2019 Dawson - Medical Texts 4</p><p> 3/5</p><p>WARREN R. DAWSON15. B 12. 3 (143). For stt in the bladderor uretha(painfulmicturation). Internaldose.Perhapsnflammation f the prostategland. B 12. 4-5 (144-7)are otherremedies orthe same.16. B verso 2. 9 (201). For gtt n the ear. Remedy applied to ear. Acute otitismedia or some</p><p>other formof ear-ache.B. verso2. 12 (203) s similar.17. Edwin Smith 15. 1. Dislocationof the ribs causes acute pain (9tt) n the costal cage(PP ) In this papyrus tt is written B ,.18. Ed. S. 16. 18; 17.2. A wound n the shoulder ausesstt n the scapula i.e.in the nervesandmusclesof the scapular egion).From an examinationof the above-mentionedasesit willbe seenthat thereis not onein whichthe meaning"swellings"or "boils" is necessaryor even probable,and to manysucha significances wholly nappropriate.Thesense n everycaseis satisfiedby the trans-lation"acutepain",or "shootingpain". In somecasesthe painmightbe of a rheumatoidcharacter, but such cannot be the meaning in Nos. 1, 4, 6, 15-18. In the numerous remediesfor pains and stiffnessin the muscles and joints which are undoubtedlyrheumatoidorarthritic, he wordgtt s neveronce used.It may be addedthat the meanings"swellings"or "rheumatism"arequiteinapplicableto the sense n Pap. Bremner-Rhind,, 26.16. The plant ,P.Thisherb,"Thoth'sfeather",or "ibis-wing", s thus employed n the medicalpapyri:</p><p>ExternalUsesMouth-wash orteeth: E 89. 9 (745).For painin rightside: E 90. 9 (758).Emollientfor stiffjoints: E 83. 15 (669).</p><p>InternalUsesVermifuge:E 22. 12 (79).For painin headandneck: E 52. 13 (299).For painin left side: E 79. 11 (631).Forpains n stomachorbelly:B 13. 9 (155);B 14. 1 (157); B 14. 5 (160).ApuleiusBarbarus Herb., i) gives IbeosPteronas one of the synonymsof his Herbaquinquefolium. This is the TrevTrdvAovf Dioscorides (De Mat. Med., iv, 42), which is one ormore of the many speciesof Potentilla,probablyP. reptans.TheEgyptianuses of "Thoth'sfeather" are consistentwith those of Dioscorides, rom whom Apuleiusborrowed. Thestrikingandunusualvernacular amegivenby the lattersuggests hat identification f thisplantwith a speciesof Potentilla s very probable.</p><p>17. The plant pB o f'Thisherb s not of commonoccurrencen medicine,but a glossin a passageof the EbersPapyrusdefines ts nature. Theprescription,which s repeated n Pap. Hearst[E 51. 15-20(294)=H 3. 4-6 (35)], is for acute painsin the iliac region( je, ), and it beginsthus:"There s a herb,4nwtt s its name;it growson its bellylikethe kWdtndits flowersarelikethe lotus. Its shoots arefoundlike 'white-wood'( ' '.=). Gather t and smear t on thegroins, hen it (the pain)subsidesimmediately. Its seeds,madeinto a cake,are given for(i.e. to relieve) he pain."</p><p>186</p></li><li><p>7/28/2019 Dawson - Medical Texts 4</p><p> 4/5</p><p>STUDIES IN THE EGYPTIAN MEDICALTEXTS-IV 187The herb is also taken internally as a vermifuge [E 22. 19 (83)], and applied externallyfor pain in the right side [E 90. 11 (759)].The description of the herb, a trailing plant with bell-like flowers, suggests a kind ofConvolvulus. There is a species, C. hystrix, that is common in Egypt at the present day, and</p><p>actual specimens of it were found amongst the floral remains discovered by Petrie atIllahun (P. E. Newberry in Petrie's Kahun, Guroband Hawara, 1890, p. 47). The plant wasalso used for making garlands, a use to which it is well adapted.Naville attempted to show that the magical plant of Nefertum, 1 , is a lotus, andthat the plant described above is identical with it.1 His demonstration is, however, uncon-vincing and rests, in my opinion, upon a mistranslation of the phrase "it grows upon itsbelly", i.e. trails, which phrase he renders "elle croit sur son bulbe"-a general characterapplying equally to every species of bulbous plant whatsoever.Many of the Convolvulaceaeare important in medicine, the seeds and roots secretingpowerfully active juices. The k;dt, the plant to which snwtt is likened, will be dealt with ina future paragraph of these notes. The Common Bindweed of Egypt (Convolvulushystrix)appears to me a probable identification of this herb.</p><p>18. The Beetle in medicineThe beetle, which in the medical texts is always written simply 0, without phoneticcomplements, is always employed externally. The wings and body of a beetle are used in anemollient for stiff joints [H 8, 15 (115)]; to promote delivery of a child the hkw (? wing-cases)of a beetle are used in an ointment [E 94. 21 (807)]; and in a prescription for expelling the"artifice of spells" a large beetle, the head and wings of which have been cut off, is to beburned, put into fat, and applied [E 81. 13 (733)=H 11. 12 (159)].Now the word, written simply 4 in the medical texts, is always read hprr as it is in the</p><p>Pyramid Texts, for instance, where the phonetic complements are added (e.g. ? 697), butit seems to me likely that this is not the true reading, and that 0, or I, is used as theword-sign for ' sq 4. This creature is represented in the Book of the Dead (? 32)as a large beetle or cockroach. In the Berlin Med. Papyrus, in a fumigation to expel "influ-ence" (_ _), a beetle, corruptly written - == , is one of the ingredients used[B 5. 11 (59)]. In the Demotic Magical Papyrus (verso,2. 17), in a recipe to drug an enemy,a beetle is burned in styrax and medicated. Here the word is written in cipher ertye, butit is doubtless the same as '&]; 9 . These two cases, which prove that the beetle usedfor medico-magical purposes was called rps;y, suggest that the same reading should beapplied to the beetle when written simply A and put to similar uses in the Ebersprescriptions.</p><p>19. The animal T-This word occurs once only, so far as I am aware, in the medical papyri, and that is in a</p><p>remedy to prevent kktfrom devouring corn in a granary [E 98. 7 (849)]. As the remedy is afumigation with gazelle's dung, it would seem, on the face of it, more likely that kkt s not a"rat", as usually translated, but "weevil ", a much more serious pest for which fumiga-tion is appropriate. On the other hand, kkt would seem to have been a mammal, or at leastsome animal larger than a weevil, as its brain is mentioned in a spell in Pap. Leiden I. 345.G1. 8, ^ < DQ1P9 , 1X One can hardly imagine the magician reciting his spell overthe brain of a weevil-an impossibility! As, however, there is a large lacuna after kk in theLeiden papyrus, the word is not certainly the same as that in Ebers.1 Revue de l'Eg. anc., I, 31-44.</p></li><li><p>7/28/2019 Dawson - Medical Texts 4</p><p> 5/5</p><p>WARREN R. DAWSON20. The mineral _== ?~WAOk I I IThisdrug,which s of frequentoccurrence, ccurs n the medical exts as follows:</p><p>ExternalUsesFor eyes: E 56. 2 (336c);E 57. 14 (354); E 57. 18 (356);E 59. 15 (371);E 59. 17 (373);E 59. 18 (374); E 62. 12 (410); E 62. 13 (411); E 62. 15 (413); E 63.1 (417); E 63.5 (419);E 63. 8 (421);E 63. 9 (422); to preventgrowthof lashes:E 64. 2 (429); forM ^e,?, of the eyes: E 57. 4 (346);E 62. 8 (407).For burns:E 67. 21 (482e);E 69. 8 (501);E 69. 13 (505)=L 15. 11 (57).Forwounds:E 70. 11 (521);L 14. 3 (43).Forherpesor similar:E 64. 16 (439);E 64. 19 (442);E 65. 7 (450);foralopecia:E 92. 8(772);E 92. 15 (776);foracneor similar:E 87. 16 (721).For ears:E 91. 2 (764);discharge f ears:E 92. 5 (770).For toes and toe-nails:E 78. 13 (620)=H 12. 14 (175);E 78. 16 (621)=H 11. 17 (173);H 12.11 (184);H 12.17 (190);H 13.2 (193);H 13.5 (196);H 13. 9 (202).For biteof a pig:H 16. 6 (242).To drawout a thorn:E 88. 15 (731).Forjoints and muscles:E 83. 7 (663);E 83. 21 (673).Fortrembling ingers:E 79. 1 (624).Forhardnessof stomach:E 43. 20 (213).For the "Bedouindisease":L 10.13 (28).For various unidentified diseases: ', ,: E 27. 5 (121) and see "eyes"; forp_,1,:, E 24. 8 (96);for L 3. 6 (7);for : H 11.9 (166).</p><p>InternalUsesAs vermifuge:E 22. 7 (76); E 22. 19 (84).Thisword s usuallytranslated"minium". Not onlyis the nameof thismineralknownto be ?t_ , ' ,, but minium (redoxide of lead) is highly poisonous and could never be takenin internaldoses.l Mnstwas usedby the Egyptiansas a yellow pigment orcolouringculp-tured reliefs.2 Lucas has stated that two yellow pigments were used by the Egyptians-orpiment and yellow ochre. Orpiment (sulphide of arsenic) is again excluded in the presentcase as being highly poisonous.3Mnst is thereforemost probably yellow ochre, a softargillaceous arthimpregnatedwith ferricoxide. Theuses generallyagreewith thosemen-tionedby DioscoridesDeMat.Med.,v, 108),but the Egyptiansemployed he drug ormorepurposes han did the Greeks. It is stated by Dioscorides o be astringentand good fortumoursandabscesses,andthat it removeshairfromulceratedareas. Likeorpiment,ochreis much used foreye-complaintsn the East.</p><p>1 The identity of prs will be dealt with in a future section of these Notes.2 Wb.d. aeg. Spr., n, 89. 3 Cf. Journal, xix, 135, ?6.</p><p>188</p></li></ul>
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