An Egyptian Tradition


Herbs played a major part in Egyptian medicine. For example, Egyptians thought garlic aided endurance and therefore consumed large quantities of it. Raw garlic was given to asthmatics and to those suffering with bronchial-pulmonary complaints. During the building of the pyramids, the workers were given garlic daily to give them the vitality and strength to carry on and perform well.


As an alchemist, Miriam was well-versed in the medicinal use of garlic. In The Deadliest Lie, she brings garlic to treat Judah’s father, Saul:


By the time I’d gathered some garlic, wrapped a few bandages, and packed everything in a basket, Phoebe had returned with the sedan chair and come inside to whisper that the bearers were waiting for me around the corner.


Later, Miriam enters Saul’s room:


Near him crouched a table jammed with the paraphernalia of the sick: vials of herbs, alabastra of scented oils, stacks of bandages to absorb his blood and spittle, and a copy of the Septuagint. I knelt at his bedside first with my lips to his forehead, next with my fingers on his pulse, and then with my ear to his chest. If he was aware of a consoling presence, he gave no sign. His red-lined lids would flutter open, but his face remained expressionless. When he’d utter a grunt, the sound was faint, like an echo from the World-to-Come.


No need to wait till you’re on the threshold of the World-to-Come. You can read The Deadliest Lie now. Moreover, the Egyptians steeped their herbs in wine. So, pour yourself a glass of this oral medicine and then click here.

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