One foot in the grave at 44 !

12796501More heart-warming advice from Real Life Problems and their Solution (1938) by the cheery R Edynbry.

‘I am just forty-four years and beginning to feel that real middle age is just around the corner. I don’t mix much with other men and never talk over my symptoms with anybody. But I often speculate as to what may be in store for me in the way of health and sickness. I should be glad if you would tell me some general symptoms of middle age so that should experience them in the coming years I should not be taken by surprise.’

Changes take place so slowly in middle age that it is often difficult to compare conditions from one year to another. The trend of physical life is now downwards, however, gradually, and whether it will be hurried or delayed depends upon the constitution and manner of living. As a rule it becomes more difficult now to plan and carry out personal schemes, the success of which depends upon quick movement and energy. The healthy flush of youth shown in the complexion, gives place to a certain pallor, except when blood pressure gives a florid appearance. Greyness and some degree of baldness begin to show. There may be a bagginess under the eyes and wrinkles at the outer corners. Hearing may not be so keen as formerly and glasses are generally necessarily for reading small print.

Perhaps the most noticeable feature of middle age is the layer of abdominal fat and the general sagging of the body. Unless increasing care is paid to the diet, dyspepsia may give trouble, and various forms of nervous irritability draw attention to the fact that something is wrong. Worry about the physical or economic situation often causes insomnia at this time. The sex life needs careful regulation and all emotional strain should be avoided as far as possible. The sensible man—who should be his own doctor to some extent in middle age—should know that one of the secrets of health and happiness at this period lies in the simplification of one’s needs and demands. Less food and plainer food; less worry because of fewer ambitions and desires; less responsibility because nothing is undertaken without reasonable hope of accomplishment. [RR]

 

InsulinHexamer

Who is the Nobelist of them all?

Found - a press-cutting of a letter written to the British medical magazine Pulse (' at the heart of General Practice since 1960.') Not dated, but probably from the late 1970s. It concerns the controversy over the discovery of insulin and was in response to an article "Who is the Nobelist of them all?'. On the following evidence it is possible that Banting is the man…

Nobelist?

Sir,-  may I add this footnote to your absorbing  "Who is the Nobelist of them all?" (PULSE, October 29) : 

Banting and Best  discovered insulin in J.J. Macleod's laboratory when the professor was away on holiday in Scotland. On his return, Mcleod published a paper on the discovery of insulin mentioning that a Doctor Banting had lent a hand.

Banting  was furious and never spoke to Macleod again. When the Carolinian Institute offered the Nobel Prize to McLeod and Banting, he refused until the names of been reversed. He asked for Best to be included, and since the institution turned this down he gave him half his share of the prize money. – Yours, etc, Dr H. Pullar-Strecker, Isleworth.

There is a good article at Wikipedia on Insulin which backs all this up and adds that J.J. Macleod also split his share with another colleague James Collip.

Banting and Best 1924
John-Parkinson-001-1629-1

Rosemary for Remembrance

Found in an old herbal by the great botanist, apothecary and herbalist John Parkinson (1567 - 1650) a 'sovereign balsam' - a recipe for a curative oil made from rosemary, probably the most prolific of all herbs in Britain. The title of this splendid folio is: Paradisi in sole paradisus terrestris : Or a garden of all sorts of pleasant flowers which our English ayre will permit to be noursed up: with a kitchen garden of all manner of herbes, rootes, and fruites, for meate or sause used with us, and an orchard of all sort of fruit-bearing trees and shrubbes fit for our land: together with the right ordering, planting, and preserving of them; and their uses and vertues. Collected by Iohn Parkinson Apothecary of London. Printed by Humfrey Lownes and Robert Young at the Signe of the Starre on Bread-Street Hill, London 1629. True to Ophelia's sad words in Hamlet ('There's rosemary. That's for remembrance. Pray you,love, remember...')  the herb was long associated with preserving and invigorating the memory. The remedy calls for a fortnight's immersion in warm horse dung. As not many now have immediate access to  hot horse manure, an airing cupboard might do for brewing the potion or the warm part of  maturing compost. The 'strong glasse' could be replaced by a Kilner jar...

Rosemary is almost of as great use as Bayes, or any other herbe both for inward and outward remedies, and as well for civill as physicall purposes. Inwardly for the head and heart; outwardly for the sinewes and joynts: for civill uses, as all doe know, at weddings, funerals, &c. to bestow among friends : and the physicall are so many, that you might bee as well tyred in the reading, as I in the writing, if I should set down all that might be faid of it. I will therefore onely give you a taste of some, desiring you will be content therewith. There is an excellent oyle drawne from the flowers aloneby the heate of the Sunne, availeable for many diseases both inward and outward, and accounted a soueraigne Balsame:it is also good to helpe dimnesses of sight, and to take away spots, markes and scarres from the skin ; and is made in this manner. Take a quantitie of the flowers of Rosemary, according to your owne will eyther more or lesse, put them into a strong glasse close stopped, let them in hot horse dung to digest for fourteene dayes, which then being taken forth of the dung, and unstoppcd, tye a fine linnen cloth over the mouth, and turne downe the mouth thereof into the mouth of another strong glasse, which being let in the hot Sun, an oyle will distill downe into the lower glasse ; which preserve as precious for the uses before recited, and many more, as experience by practice may enforme divers,  viz. for the heart, rheumaticke braines, and to strengthen the memory, whereof many of good judgement have had  experience.

remedieoto-1

A Remedie against Ache of the Herte

Found - this small keepsake card with deckled edges published by Mowbray's (bookshop chain and publisher.) It was written by Margaret Smith-Masters, a poet, novelist and translator (from French) who seems to have flourished in the early part of the 20th century. COPAC record a dozen works by her between 1907 and 1936, including one on boy scouts and one published by Burns & Oates, which might indicate she was Roman Catholic. This piece in fake 'Olde Englishe' is reminiscent of the more famous Patience Strong or Wilhelmina Stitch...

A REMEDIE 
against Ache of the Herte

Take 
A lyttel Silence
And of Charitie much quantitie
And of Courtesie a good lie store:
Add thereto some portion of the lowly
    herbe Humilitie;
Of balme of Kindnesse be prodigale;
Season these with spice of Wisdome
And temper with dewes of Mercie;
Of oile of Gladnesse droppe full measure,
And blende alle with sweet Patience.
Be spende-thrifte of this salve for comfort
   of thy fellows
As through the world thou wendest;
Soe shall Ease of Herte be ever thine.

Margaret Smith- Masters