Friday, April 18, 2014

How to Wake or Sleep, 1685

Look deep into the eye of the toad...
Edward Topsell, The History of Four-Footed Beasts and Serpents (1658)
"To make one wake or sleep. You must cut dexterously the Head of a Toad, alive, and at once, and let it dry, in observing that one Eye be shut, and the other open; that which is found open makes one wake, and that shut causes Sleep, by carrying it about one." 
Nicolas Lémery, Modern Curiosities of Art & Nature (1685)
Who needs caffeine or Ambien when you've got the shriveled head of a winking toad?

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