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Title: A Briefe Discourse of a Disease called the Suffocation of the Mother
Author: Iorden, Edward
Language: English
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  Suffocation of the

  Written vppon occasion which
  hath beene of late taken thereby, to suspect possession
  of an euill spirit, or some such like
  supernaturall power.

  _Wherein is declared that diuers strange_
  actions and passions of the body of man, which in
  _the common opinion, are imputed to the Diuell,
  haue their true naturall causes, and do
  accompanie this disease_.

  _Doctor in Physicke_.


  Printed by _Iohn Windet_, dwelling at the Signe of
  _the Crosse Keyes at Powles Wharfe_. 1603.





  Cap.1.   That this disease doth oftentimes giue occasion vnto simple
             and vnlearned people, to suspect possession, witchcraft,

  Cap.2.   What this disease is, and by what means it causeth such
             varietie of Symptoms.

  Cap.3.   Of the kinds of this disease, and first of that wherein the
             vitall facultie is offended.

  Cap.4.   Of that kind of this disease wherein the animall facultie
             is offended.

  Cap.5.   Of that kind wherein the naturall facultie is offended.

  Cap.6.   Of the causes of this disease.

  Cap.7.   Of the cure of this disease, so much as belongeth to the
             friends and attendants to performe.


  shipfull the President and Fellowes of the
  _Colledge of Phisitions in_

_As I am desirous to satisfie all indifferent men concerning the
occasion and intent of this my discourse: so I thought good to direct
the same especially vnto this societie, whereof I am a member; to
testifie both how iustly or rather necessarily I haue beene drawn to
the vndertaking and publishing hereof: as also how willing I am to
submit my selfe to your learned censure; the argument of my writing
being such as none can better iudge of then your selues._

_And first I protest vpon that credit which I desire to haue among you,
that I haue not vndertaken this businesse of mine owne accord, as if
I esteemed of mine owne knowledge and obseruation in this case aboue
other mens. For (if it had beene thought good to haue imposed it vppon
others) I do acknowledge that there are many among vs better able then
my selfe to haue written in this kind, vnto whome I would willingly
haue put ouer my taske. Neither did I euer find my selfe prouoked
hereunto upon any peeuish humor to contradict or to disgrace any who
doe iudge otherwise of some pointes contained herein, then my selfe
doe: many of them being such as I do loue and affect well. Neither vpon
any fawning humor to please or flatter any person whatsoeuer; which I
doe esteeme more base then begging. But disclayming both hony and gall,
I haue plainely set downe the true doctrine of Phisicke concerning
that disease which giues to great occasion of distraction among many
good men: especially such as haue not learning sufficient to resolue
them of this point, or not that moderation and humilitie of spirit to
acknowledge their insufficiencie, and to hearken vnto others whom in
all reason they might thinke able to direct them better in such a case._

_For if it be true that one man cannot be perfect in euery arte and
profession, and therefore in cases out of our owne callings, we do
depend vpon those which haue beene trayned up in other particular
subiects, beleeuing men in their owne professions: Why should we
not prefer the iudgements of Phisitions in a question concerning
the actions and passions of mans bodie (the proper subiect of that
profession) before our owne conceites; as we do the opinions of
Diuines, Lawyers, Artificers, &c. in their proper Elements. Neither
haue I done this as taking vpon me to reforme the mindes of men which
are not vnder my charge (for I could willingly haue permitted euery
man to enioy his owne opinion:) But being a Phisition, and iudging
in my conscience that these matters haue been mistaken by the commõ
people; I thought good to make knowne the doctrine of this disease,
so farre forth, as may be in a vulgar tongue conueniently disclosed,
to the end that the vnlearned and rash conceits of diuers, might be
thereby brought to better vnderstanding and moderation; who are apt
to make euery thing a supernaturall work which they do not vnderstand,
proportioning the bounds of nature vnto their own capacities: which
might proue an occasion of abusing the name of God, and make vs to vse
holy prayer as vngroundedly as the Papists do their prophane trickes;
who are readie to drawe forth their wooden dagger, if they do but see a
maid or woman suffering one of these fits of the Mother, coniuring and
exorcising them as if they were possessed with euil spirits. And for
want of worke, will oftentimes suborne others that are in health, to
counterfait strange motions and behauiours: as I once saw in the_ Santo
_in_ Padua _fiue or sixe at one sermon interrupting and reuiling the
Preacher, vntill he had put them to silence by the signe of the Crosse,
and certaine powerlesse spelles_.

_Wherefore it behoueth vs as to be zealous in the truth, so to be
wise in discerning truth from counterfaiting and naturall causes from
supernaturall power. I doe not deny but that God doth in these dayes
worke extraordinarily, for the deliuerance of his children, and for
other endes best knowne vnto himselfe; and that among other, there may
be both possessions by the Diuell, and obsessions and witchcraft, &c.
and dispossession also through the Prayers and supplications of his
seruants, which is the onely meanes left vnto vs for our reliefe in
that case. But such examples being verie rare now adayes, I would in
the feare of God aduise men to be very circumspect in pronouncing of
a possession: both because the impostures be many, and the effects of
naturall diseases be strange to such as haue not looked throughly into

_But let vs consider a little the signes which some doe shew of a
supernaturall power in these examples. For if they say there neede
no such signes appeare, because the Diuill by witchcraft may inflict
a naturall disease: then I ask them what they haue to doe with the
Diuell, or with dispossessing of him, when he is not their present,
but hath beene onely an externall cause of a disease, by kindling or
corrupting the humours of our bodies; which disease as well as other
will submit it selfe to physicall indications: as is shewed, cap. 1.
Wherefore they must needes make him to be an internall cause, and to
possesse the members and faculties of the bodie, and holde them to
his vse: or else they vnderstand not what they say, when they doe
peremptorily disclaime naturall meanes, and auouch that they speake
certaine wordes, and performe certaine voluntarie motions vpon his
incitation, and are hindred by him from speaking other wordes which
they would faine vtter. And therefore to this end diuerse signes and
Symptoms are alledged by them, as arguments of a supernaturall and
extraordinarie power inhærent in the body._

_One of their signes is_ Insensibilitie, _when they doe not feele,
being pricked with a pin, or burnt with fire, &c. Is this so strange a
spectacle, when in the Palsie, the falling sicknesse, Apoplexis, and
diuerse other diseases, it is dayly obserued? And in these fits of the
Mother it is so ordinarie as I neuer read any Authour writing of this
disease who doth not make mention thereof. This poynt you shall finde
proued both by authorities and examples in the 4. Chapter._

_There also you shall find conuulsions, contractions, distortions, and
such like to be ordinarie Symptoms in this disease._

_Another signe of a supernaturall power they make to be the due &
orderly returning of the fits, when they keepe their iust day and
houre, which we call periods or circuits. This accident as it is
common to diuerse other chronicall diseases, as head-aches, gowtes,
Epilepsies, Tertians, Quartians, &c. so it is often obserued in this
disease of the mother as is sufsiciently proued in the 2. Chapter._

_Another argument of theirs is the ofsence in eating, or drinking, as
if the Diuell ment to choake them therewith. But this Symptom is also
ordinarie in vterin affects, as I shew in the sixt Chapter: and I haue
at this time a patient troubled in like maner._

_Another reason of theirs is, the comming of the fits vpon the presence
of some certaine person. The like I doe shew in the same Chapter, and
the reasons of it, from the stirring of the affections of the mind._

_Another maine argument of theirs, is the deliuerance vpon fasting
and prayer: which we will imagin to be so in deed, without any
counterfeiting in that point. You shall see in the 7. Chapter, how this
may be a naturall remedie two maner of wayes: the one by pulling downe
the pride of the bodie, and the height of the naturall humors therof; a
verie conuenient meanes, and often prescribed by our Authours in yong
and lustie bodies: the other by the confident perswasion of the patient
to find release by that means: which I shew in that Chapter by rules
and authorities in our profession and also by examples, to be a verie
effectuall remedie in curing diuerse diseases of this nature._

_Many other such like instances they may produce, according vnto
euerie ones seurall conceit: which were in vaine for me to repeat
perticulary: vnlesse I knew wherein they would principally insist. But
in the discourse following I haue as neare as I could described al the
Symptoms of this disease; whereby euerie man may readily find answers
to his seuerall obiections._

_Now to testifie my loue and affection to this societie of ours, and
that I esteeme more of the censure of a fewe learned and graue men,
then of the opinions of a multitude of other people: I thought good
to choose no other persons to patronize this slender discourse then
your selues, who are best able of any in this land, or any such like
societie elsewhere (that euer I could find) to iudge whether I write
true doctrine or no._

  _Wherefore desiring you to accept it in good part, and
  as occasion may serue to giue testimonie vnto it according
  as your iudgements and consciences
  shall lead you, I take my leaue this
  2. Martii, 1602._

  Your louing friend and Colleague.

  _Ed. Iorden._


Of the suffocation of _the Mother_.

Cap. 1.

  _That this disease doth oftentimes giue occasion vnto simple and
  vnlearned people, to suspect possession, witchcraft, or some such
  like supernaturall cause._

[Sidenote: _Altomarus de medend. hum. corp. malis cap. 110. Barth.
Montagnana Consilio. 226._]

[Sidenote: _Mercatus lib. 2. cap. 2. & 3._]

The passiue condition of womankind is subiect vnto more diseases and
of other[1] sortes and natures then men are: and especially in regarde
of that part[2] from whence this disease which we speake of doth
arise. For as it hath more varietie of[3] offices belonging vnto it
then other partes of the bodie haue, and accordingly is supplied from
other partes with whatsoeuer it hath need of for those vses: so it
must needes thereby be subiect vnto mo infirmities then other parts
are: both by reason of such as are bred in the part it selfe, and also
by reason of such as are communicated vnto it from other parts, with
which it hath correspondence. And as those offices in their proper
kindes are more excellent then other; so the diseases whereby they are
hurt or depraued, are more grieuous. But amongest all the diseases
wherevnto that sex is obnoxious, there is none comparable vnto this
which is called _The Suffocation of the mother_, either for varietie,
or for strangenesse of accidents. For whatsoeuer straunge accident
may appeare in any of the principall functions of mans bodie, either
animall, vitall, or naturall, the same is to bee seene in this disease,
by reason of the communitie and consent which this part hath with
the braine, heart, and liuer, the principall seates of these three
functions; and the easie passage which it hath vnto them by the Vaines,
Arteries, and Nerues. And whatsoeuer humor in other partes may cause
extraordinarie affects, by reason of the abundance or corruption of
it, this part will affoord the like in as plentifull a manner, and in
as high a degree of corruption: and with this aduauntage that whereas
in the other, some one or two of the faculties onely one are hurt
(as in _Apoplexies_, _Epilepsyes_, _Syncopyes_, subuersions of the
stomacke, &c.) and not all (vnlesse as in _Syncopyes_ by consent, where
the vitall function ceasing, all the rest must needes cease) in this
case all the faculties of the bodie doe suffer; not as one may do from
another, but all directly from this one fountaine, in such sort as you
shall often tymes perceyue in one and the same person diuerse accidents
of contrarie natures to concurre at once.

  [1] _Hyppocras. 6 vulgar. part. 7._

  [2] _Galen 6. locorum affect. cap. 5. radix suffocationum

  [3] _Mercatus de muliebr. lib. 2, cap. 1._

  1. _Ad sui ipsius alimontam._

  2. _Ad species propagationem_.

  3. _Ad beneficium indiuidui per euacuationẽ superfluitatum._

[Sidenote: Valetius scoffing at their ignorance calleth this disease a
kind of diuell. _in Holler. cap. 59_.]

And hereupon the _Symptoms_ of this disease are sayd to be monstrous
and terrible to beholde, and of such a varietie as they can hardly be
comprehended within any method or boundes. Insomuch as they which are
ignorant of the strange affects which naturall causes may produce,
and of the manifold examples which our profession of Phisicke doth
minister in this kind, haue sought aboue the Moone for supernaturall
causes: ascribing these accidents either to diabolicall possession, to
witchcraft, or to the immediate finger of the Almightie.

[Sidenote: _Cosmocrit. li. 1 cap. 7. pag. 153 Inexperto medico sapè
suspitionem ñuminis præb̃uerunt_]

But it is no maruell though the common people and men also in other
faculties verie excellent may bee deceyued by the rarenesse and
straungenesse of these matters, which are hidden out of their Horizon
amongest the deepest mysteries of our profession: when as Phisitions
themselues, as _Cornelius Gemma_ testifieth. If they bee not verie wel
exercised in the practise of their profession, are oftentimes deceyued,
imagining such manifolde straunge accidents as their hee mencioneth to
accompanie this disease, (as _suffocation_ in the throate, croaking
of Frogges, hissing of Snakes, crowing of Cockes, barking of Dogges,
garring of Crowes, frenzies, convulsions, hickcockes, laughing,
singing, weeping, crying, &c.) to proceede from some metaphysicall
power, when in deede (as hee there sayeth) they are meerely naturall.

[Sidenote: _Fen. 21. 3 cap: 26: tract: 4:_]

_Auicen_ also in his Chapter of this disease, speaking of the causes
of it, sayth, that there were some wise Phisitions in his time which
said, that the cause of this disease was vnknowne: Because as _Iacobus
de Partibus_ expoundeth it, they did thinke it to be inflicted from
aboue, yet notwithstanding he setteth downe naturall causes of it, and
a naturall cure.

[Sidenote: _Lib. de morbo sacro in principio._]

[Sidenote: _Inscitia palliũ maleficium & incantatio. R. Sc: li, 1.
cap. 3_]

_Hippocrates_ also long before finding this error to bee helde by some
in his time maketh mention of diuerse of these _Symptoms_, and sayeth,
that hee doth not see anie thing in them more supernaturall, or more
to bee admired, then there is in Tertians, and Quartans, and other
kindes of diseases: imputing it either vnto ignorance, and want of
experience that Phisitians of his time did iudge otherwise; or vnto a
worser humor, when as beeing loath to bewray their owne defects through
pride and arrogancie: and not knowing what to prescribe would flie
vnto diuine causes, and neglecting naturall meanes for their reliefe,
would wholy relie vpon expiations, incantations, sacrifices, &c.
cloaking their ignoraunce vnder these shadows, and pretending both more
knowledge, and more pietie then other men: by which course they gained
this aduauntage, that if the patient chanced to recouer, they should
bee highly renowmed for their skill; if not, their excuse was readie
that Gods hande was against them.

This hee speaketh of the Phisitions of his time, whome he confuteth
principally by two reasons, which may serue for excellent rules for
all men to discerne such cases by. The first is, that there is no
supernaturall Character in these _Symptoms_, as hee proueth by an
induction of diuerse of them, which in the cõmon opinion were thought
to be aboue nature: yet hee proueth to haue their naturall causes in
the bodie of man as well as others haue.

The strength of this argument will better appeare hereafter in the
particular _Symptoms_, which we are to entreate of: where it shall be
made manifest that the most of them doe both depende vpon such naturall
causes as other diseases haue in our bodies, and also are oftentimes
mixed with other diseases which are accompted naturall.

It may likewise appeare by this, that whereas all other diseases
are knowne by their notes and signes which resemble their cause (as
_Choller_, _Flegme_, _Melancholy_, _&c._ haue their proper markes,
corruption and putrefaction, their proper notes and malignity his
Character) so there must be some Character or note of a supernaturall
power in these cases (as [4]extraordinary strength or knowledge or
suffering) or else we haue no cause but to think them naturall. If the
diuell as an externall cause, may inflict a disease by stirring vp or
kindling the humours of our bodies, and then depart without supplying
continuall supernaturall power vnto it;[5] then the disease is but
naturall, and will submit it selfe vnto Physicall cure. For externall
causes when they are already remoted, giue no indication of any remedy.

  [4] Luk. 8. 27. 28. &c.

  _Ternel de abditis rerum causis lib. 2. cap 16 Platerus de mẽtis
  alienat. pag. 102._

  _Beniuenius de abditis morborum causis cap. 8. Alsharauius. C. de

  [5] _Auicen. C. de melancholisi contingat a Demonio sufficit nobis
  quod conuertat comptexionem ad choleram nigram, &c. Vide Iacobum de
  partibus inhunc locum. Valesius metb; medendi lib. 2. cap. 2._

The second argument of this is, that these _Symptoms_ do yeeld vnto
natural causes, and are both procured and also eased by such ordinary
meanes, as other diseases are: and[6] therefore they must needs be

  [6] _Fernel loco citato matheus de Grad. ex Azariuio. C. de

The strength of this argument is grounded vpon the very foundation
of our profession which hath beene layd by[7] _Hyppocrates_ and[8]
_Gallen_ long agoe and euer since confirmed by the practise and
obseruations of all learned men; that diseases are cured by their
contraries. I say contrary[9] both vnto the disease, vnto the cause,
and vnto the _Symptom_. And the more exact the contrarietie is; the
more proper is the remedy: as when they are equall in[10] degree
or in power. But what equality of contrariety either in degree or
in power, can there be betweene a supernaturall suffocating power,
and the compression of the belly or throate. They are disperats in
Logicke, but not contraries. For contrarietie is betweene such as are
comprehended vnder one generall. And where one is opposed vnto one
alone, and not indifferently vnto many. Neither doe I thinke, that any
man wel aduised, will say that by compression of those parts, he is
able to suppresse the power of the diuell. The like may be saide of
the application of cupping glasses, of sweete plaisters, of ligatures,
&c. beneath, and of euell smelles aboue; by all which we do obserue
those kindes of fits to be mitigated: and yet there can bee no such
contrary respect in thẽ against a supernatural cause, as is between
a remedy and a disease. They are also procured vpon sweete smelles,
vpon pleasant meats and drinkes, vpon feare, anger, iealousie, &c.
as in the particular causes shall bee farther declared: and yet no
such consent can bee shewed in them with any supernaturall affect,
as that they may any way cause or encrease it. Wherefore the rule of
_Hyppocrates_ must needes be true; that if these _Symptoms_ do yeeld
vnto naturall remedies, they must also bee naturall themselues. And
thus much in explanation of these two arguments of _Hyppocrates_
against the errour of his time: which notwithstanding hath been
continued in the mindes of men vntill this day, and no maruell: vnlesse
the same corruption which bred it at the first, had beene remoued out
of the world. And therefore diuers of our Authors doe make especiall
mention of this case wherein they report the common people to haue
beene deceiued by imagining witchcraft or possession, where indeed
there was none.

  [7] _Hippo. de natura humaaa circa medium. Destatibus paulo post

  [8] _Gal. de Venesectione aduersus Erasistr: cap: 8, in arte
  medicina li cap: 89. in constitutione artis cap: 13. methodi med:
  lib. 9. 10. 11. &c._

  [9] _Valesius meth. med: lib: 1. cap: 4:_

  [10] _Mercatus meth med: pag: 42: 43: Gal. Simplicium lib. 3: cap:
  11: Valesius controuers: lib. 1. cap. 4_ Luk, 11. vers. 21. 22.

[Sidenote: _Georg. Godelman. de magis. &c. lib 1: cap 8._

_Bruno Seidelius de morbis incurab: pag: 19: Centuria 5, curat: 75._]

_Amatus Lusitanus_ reporteth of one _Diua Clara_, a maide of 18. years
of age, which had euery day two or three such strange fits, as those
that were about her, gaue out that she was haunted with an euill spirit.

In those fits euery part of her body was distorted, she felt nothing,
nor perceiued any thing: but had all her senses benummed, her hart
beating, her teeth close shut together: yet for an houres space or two
she would haue such strong motions, that shee would weary the strongest
men that came at her. When she had beene three weekes in this case, her
left arme began to be resolued with a palsie, &c. He being called vnto
her prescribed such remedies as are usuall in this case, and within
few dayes recouered her, to the great admiration of the beholders.

[Sidenote: _Obseruationũ medicin: lib: 10 obseru: 30._]

_Petrus Forrestus_ maketh mention of another maid of 22. yeares old,
which dwelt with a Burgermaster of _Delft_ in _Holland_, who falling in
loue with a yong man, fell also into these fits of the Mother: which
held her many houres together with such violent horrible accidents,
as hee neuer sawe the like: her whole body being pulled to and fro
with convulsiue motions, her belly sometimes lifted vp, and sometimes
depressed, a roaring noise heard within her, with crying and howling, a
distortion of her armes and handes: insomuch as those about her thought
her to be possessed with a diuell, and out of all hope of recouery. He
being called vnto her in Ianuarie 1565. applied conuenient remedies as
there he setteth downe, and in a short time restored her to her health

[Sidenote: _Thaddæus Dumus miscall: cap 9._]

[Sidenote: _Lib. 28. obseru. 26:_]

Many more such like examples might bee produced both out of
authenticall writers in our profession and out of our own experiences,
which yet do liue (were it not that late examples would bee
offensiue to rehearse:) but these may suffice to show how easily
men vnexperienced in those extraordinarie kinds of diseases, may
mistake the causes of them: when through admiration of the vnwonted
and grieuous accidents they behold, they are caried vnto Magicall
and Metaphysicall speculations. But the learned Phisition who hath
first beene trained vp in the study of Philosophy, and afterwards
confirmed by the practise and experience of all manner of naturall
diseases, is best able to discerne what is naturall, what not naturall,
what preternaturall, and what supernaturall, the three first being
properly subiect to his profession: and therefore they doe wrong
vnto the faculty of Phisicke, and vnto them selues, and oftentimes
vnto others, who neglecting that light which wee might yeeld them,
doe runne headlong and blindefold into many errors and absurdities.
For preuention whereof I haue breefly set downe what the doctrine of
Phisitions is concerning this disease of the Mother, which of all other
is most subiect vnto misconstruction. For that as _Forrestus_ saieth
it is a harde matter to discerne in what maner the Mother may occasion
such strange and manifold accidents.

Cap. 2.

  _What this disease is, and by what means it causeth such varietie of

[Sidenote: _Cardamus de causis sig. 13 locis morborum cap. 114._

_Altomarus cap. 110. Guaynerius cap. de suffo: matricis._]

[Sidenote: _Æesius tetr: 4 Serm. 4. cap. 68 P. Ægineta lib. 3. cap.
71. Victor Trincavel. lib: 5. sect. 3 cap. 9._]

This disease is called by diuerse names amongst our Authors. _Passio
Hysterica_, _Suffocatio_, _Præfocatio_, and _Strangulatus vteri_,
_Caducus matricis_, _&c._ In English the Mother, or the Suffocation
of the Mother, because most commonly it takes them with choaking in
the throat: and it is _an affect of the Mother or wombe wherein the
principal parts of the bodie by consent do suffer diuersly according
to the diuersitie of the causes and diseases wherewith the matrix is

I call it an _affect_ in a large signification to comprehend both
_morbum_ and _Symptoma_. For sometimes it is either of them, and
somtimes both. For in regard the actions of expulsion or retention in
the _Mother_ are hurt. It may be called a _Symptoma in actione læsa_:
in regard of the humor to be expelled which corrupteth and putrifieth
to a venemous malignitie. It is likewise a _Symptom in excremento vteri
mutato_. And in regard of the perfrigeration of the Mother, and so of
the whole bodie. It is also a _Symptom_[11] _in qualitate tangibili
mutata_, not _morbus ex intẽperie_:[12] because it is suddenly
inflicted & suddenly remoued. But in regard of the rising of the Mother
wherby it is somtimes drawn vpwards or sidewards aboue his natural
seate, compressing the neighbour parts, & so consequently one another.
It may be said to be _morbus in situ_, in respect of the compression it
selfe, causing suffocatiõ and difficultie of breathing. It may be[13]
_causa morbi in forma_ by causing _coarctation_ of the instruments of
breathing. And sometimes these are complicated and[14] together with a
venemous vapour, arising from this corrupt humor vnto diuers parts of
the bodie, there will be an euill position of the matrix also: either
because the ligaments, vaines and arteries beeing obstructed:[15] by
those vapours are shortened of their wonted length, and so draw vp
the part higher then it should be, or[16] for that the matrix being
grieuously anoyed with the malignity of those vapours doth contract it
selfe and rise vp by a locall motion towards the midrif.

  [11] _Albert. Bottonus cap. 39._

  [12] _Gal. locorum affectorum 3. cap. 7._

  _Petrus Salius pag. 467._

  _Altomarus cap. 110._

  _Horatius Angenius Epist. 6_

  [13] _Gal. de causis morb. cap. 7_

  [14] _Altomarus citato. Rondelesius methodo curand. morb. cap. 69.
  matheus de grad. in 9 Rhasis. cap. 28_

  [15] _Mercatus lib 2. cap 3._

  [16] _Matheus de grad. in 9. Rhasis cap. 28. Hor. Angenius sibi
  offensum fugiens vt et iucundum insequens._

[Sidenote: _Galen. 6. loc. affert. cap. 5. Auicen. Fen. 21 3. cap. 16.
tract 4. initium est ex matrice et peruenit ad communitatẽ fortem
cordis et cerebri &c. Horatius Angenius Epistola 6._]

[Sidenote: _Petrus solius diuersus pag. 400_]

[Sidenote: _Mercat. pa. 170_]

[Sidenote: _Merca. pa. 174_]

I say of the _Mother_ or wombe because although the wombe many times in
this disease doe suffer but secondarily, yet the other parts are not
affected in this disease but from the Mother: (_Radix suffocationum
vterus_) which finding it selfe anoyed by some vnkind humor, either
within it selfe, or in the vessels adioyning or belonging vnto it,
doth by a naturall instinct which is ingrafted in euery part of the
body for his owne preseruation, endeuour to expell that which is
offensiue: in which conflict if either the passage be obstructed, or
the humor inobedient or malignant, or the functions of the wombe any
way depraued, the offence is communicated from thence vnto the rest of
the body. The principall part of the body are the seates of the three
faculties, which do gouerne the whole body. The braine of the animall,
the hart of the vitall, the liuer of the naturall; although some other
parts are plentifully endewed with some of these faculties, as the
stomacke, entrailes, vaines, spleene, &c. with naturall faculties, the
instruments of respiration[17] with animall and naturall. These parts
are affected in this disease, and do suffer in their functions as they
are diminished, depraued, or abolished,[18] according to the nature &
plenty of the humor, and the temperament and scituation of the Mother:
and that _diuersly_: For somtimes the instruments of respiration
alone doe suffer, sometimes the heart alone, sometimes two or three
faculties together, sometimes successiuely one after another, sometimes
one part suffereth both a resolution and a conuulsion in the same
fit, or when as it suffereth in one part and not in another, as we
see oftentimes sense and motion to bee taken away and yet hearing and
memorie to remaine, the speech failing and respiration good. Sometimes
respiration, sense, and motion do altogether faile, and yet the pulse
remaine good: So that the varietie of those fits is exceeding great,
wherein the principall parts of the body doe diuersly suffer.

  [17] _Gal. de difficultate respirãd: lib. 1. cap. 7. Trincauel.
  li. 4. cap. 12. Felix platerus ca. de respira. defectis. Gal. de
  sympt. differentiis Cap 2. 3._

  [18] _Gal. 5. loc. affect. 6 Mercatus pag. 173._

[Sidenote: _Gabr. Fallopius de med. purg. Cap. 17. et 23. via

Another diuersitie there is, in the order of these fits: for somtimes
they keep due[19] periods or circuits yearly or monthly, according to
the falling sicknes, and sometime euery weeke, sometimes[20] euery day,
&c. I know a gentlewomã in this towne, who for 2. yeares together
neuer missed a fit of the Mother in the afternoone. The like is
hereafter mentioned in the Essex gentlewo. who for 16. years altogether
had euery day a fit of the Mother at a certaine houre. _D. Argent_ and
I had another patient, in whome for 10. weeks together we obserued a
fit of the mother euery saturday. I adde _by consent of the Mother_
to distinguish those _Symptoms_ or diseases from such as are caused
originally by the part affected. For being procured but by consent,
they endure no longer thẽ the fits of the mother do continue. The
consent or communitie by which the matrix hath with those principal
parts of the body is easily perceiued, if wee consider the anatomy of
that part, & the diuers waies whereby it may and doth communicate with
them. The fũctions of this part, besides that which is commõ to all
other for their nutriment deriued from the naturall facultie, are 2.
the one respecting the preseruatiõ of the whole body, as it is an
_Emunctory_ of diuers superfluities which do abound in that sex. The
other for the propagation of mankind, where it is to be conceiued and
nourished vntill it be able to appeare in the world. In regard of these
offices this part hath neede of great varietie of prouision, according
as the vses are manifold. The substance is neruous, for the great
necessitie it hath of sence and motion.

  [19] **_Ætius lib. 26. cap. 70_

  P. Agineta. lib. 3. cap. 71.

  Rhasis cont. lib. 22. mesue sum. 4. part. 4. sect. 1 cap. 8._

  [20] **_Auicen Fen. 213. cap. 16. tract 4. quandoque sunt period.
  eius tardi, quandoque accidit omni die._

[Sidenote: _Constant. Varelius lib. 4. cap. 3_]

It is also _Porous_ for the better entertaining of the vitall spirits
and the necessitie it hath of distention and contraction.

[Sidenote: _Gasparus Bauhinus historia anatom. p. 71._]

It is tied vnto diuers partes of the body that it might the better
beare the weight of an infant: backwards by little strings vnto the
lower gut, vnto the loines and _os sacrum_: forwardes vnto the necke
of the bladder and _os pubis_ by certaine membranes deriued from the
_peritoneum_: on each side it is tyed vnto _ossa illii_ by a ligament
growing from the muscles of the loynes. It receiueth also for the
former vses, vaines from the liuer, arteries from the hart, and nerues
from the braine and backe, which are all inserted into the substance
of the part, to deriue vnto it the benefit of those 3. faculties, both
for the proper vse of the part, and for the vse of propagation and to
discharge the whole bodie of diuers superfluities, which otherwise
would be an occasion of many infirmities in them.

Now according to this description let vs consider how by consent, the
principall partes of the bodie may bee affected from the matrix.

[Sidenote: _Fernel. pathologiæ li. 6. ca. 16_]

[Sidenote: _Forestus lib. 10 obseru: 115: in scholsis._]

The partes of our bodie doe suffer by consent[21] two manner of wayes.
The one is when they doe recyue some offensiue thing from another parte
which is [22]called _Communitas non absoluta_. And this is either a
qualitie as in venemous and infectious diseases, where the malignitie
creeping from one part to another doth alter the qualitie of the
parts as it goeth, and at the last is communicated to the principall
parts, as the head, heart, liuer, longs, &c. or a substance which
either by manifest conducts, as vaines, nerues, arteries, &c. or by
insensible pores (as _Hyppocrates_ saith, our bodies are transpirable,
and transmeable) is conuaied from one part to another: whether it
be a vapour or a humor, as wee doe commonly obserue in the fits of
feuers, where a vapour arising from the part affected, disperseth it
selfe through the whole body, and affecteth the sensiue parts with
colde or heate, the motiue parts with trembling, the vitall parts with
fainting, sounding, inequalitie of pulse, &c. the naturall parts with
deiection of appetite, subuersion of the stomacke, &c. vntill nature
haue ouercome and discussed it. In these Feuers also many times humors
are so plentifully sent vp vnto the braine, as by custome or long
continuance they breede some proper affect there.

  [21] _Trincauel. l. 3 Sect. 2. cap. 2._

  [22] _Auicen. Fẽ. 1. 3. tract. 2. ca. 6 Montagnana consil.

[Sidenote: _Gal: locorum affect: 1: cap: 6_]

[Sidenote: _Rondeletius cap 69. Trincauell loco citato:_]

The other kinde of communitie is that which they call _Communitas
absoluta_, wherein the part consenting receiueth nothing from the
other, but yet is partaker of his griefe: either for _similitude_
of substance or function, which causeth mutuall compassion: as all
neruous partes haue with the braine: whereby if any Nerue or neruous
part bee hurt or pricked, the braine suffreth a convulsion, or _for
neighbourhood_ and vicinitie, whereby one part may offend another,
by compression or incumbencie: as in the prolapse of the Mother,
the bladder or fundament is oftentimes offended in their naturall
excretion. And in this disease which we haue in hand by the locall
motion of it vpwardes, the midriffe is straightned of his scope,
whereby the lunges doe faile in their dutie, or by _reason of connexion
or continuitie_ which it hath with other parts, by Vaines, Nerues,
Arteries, Membranes, Ligaments, &c. whereby the offence is easily
imparted vnto other partes. Or lastly by priuation of some _facultie
or matter_, whereof the part hath neede. As in the obstruction of the
_Spina Dorsi_ there followeth a resolution or palsie of the legges or
armes, by reason that the animall facultie that should giue sence or
motion to the part is intercepted and hindered in his passage. Likewise
in a resolution of the Muscles of the brest, as in a wound of that
part, or in swounding the voice is taken away, because the matter of it
which is breath, is either not sufficiently made, or is carried another
way, or not competently impelled to the organs of voyce.

All these manner of wayes hath the Matrix by consent to impart her
offence vnto other parts. For there wãteth no corruption of humor,
vapour, nor euill qualitie, where this part is ill affected, to infect
other partes withall, there wantes no oportunitie of conueyance or
passage vnto any part, by reason of the large Vaynes, Arteries, and
Nerves, which are deriued vnto it, with which it hath great affinitie
and similitude of substance, besides the connexion it hath with the
heart, liuer, braine, and backe. It is linked also in neighborhoode
with diuerse partes of great vse, as the bladder, guttes, midriffe, &c.
which are likely to bee warmed when this part doth burne. _According
to the varietie of causes and diseases wherewith the wombe is
offended_, these _Symptoms_ doe differ in nature, or in degree. [23]A
plentifull matter produceth a vehement _Symptom_: a corrupt matter
according to the degree of corruption, and the qualitie of the humor
corrupted, causeth like accidents. The diseases also of the Mother
being cõplicated with the former corrupt humors do yeeld varietie of
_Symptoms_: as the rising of the Mother, which alwayes causeth shortnes
of breath: [24]Empostumes of the Mother according to the place where
they are bred, and the quality of them, doe also bring a difference in
_Symptoms_. And thus much for explanation of the definition.

  [23] _Mercatus pag. 165._

  [24] _Mathæus de gradi. & Auicenna locis citatis._

Cap. 3.

  _Of the kinds of this disease, and first of that wherein the vitall
  facultie is offended._

[Sidenote: _Affectus corporis vel excretionum vitiæ._]

Now I come to the kinds and sorts of this disease, which may bee
reduced vnto three principall heades, according as euerie part of the
bodie belongeth vnto some of the three principall functions which do
gouerne the bodie of man. Not that euerie _Symptom_ in this disease
doth hurt some of the three functions, for some are onely molestations
or deformities, as sudden Collickes, windie humors, noyses, alteration
of colour, &c. But because euerie part may well bee mustred vnder
some of these generals: and we doe seldome see any hystericall affect
wherein some one or mo of the functions are not affected. These
functions as they are distinct in office, so they possesse in our
bodies seuerall seats and haue seuerall instruments belonging vnto them.

[Sidenote: _Trincauel. li. 4 cap. 24._]

[Sidenote: _De partium morbis et symp. lib. 5: cap. 12._]

1 The vitall function which by preseruing naturall heat in a
due temperature, maintaineth the coniunction of soule and bodie
togither, hath his principall mansion in the heart, and from thence
by his Arteries conueyeth vitall spirites vnto euery member. So as
without this wee could not liue: and therefore it is accounted the
principallest function, because the rest receyue their being from
this, and this fayling they must needes all cease. This function is
performed by the motion of the heart, and Arteries, which in this
affect of the Mother is drawne into consent as it is either diminished,
abolished, or depraued. The deprauation of this motion is either when
it is too fast and quick, or when it beates disorderly. The pulse in
this disease is oftentimes too quicke, although it bee weake withall:
but seeing it brings no great offence with it, the patient doth seldome
complaine thereof. The greater offence is when it beates disorderly,
and keepes no equall nor orderly stroke, but either trembleth and
daunceth in the motion, or else is violently impelled: insomuch as it
doth not onely remoue ones hande being applied to some part where the
Arteries are great and near to the skinne (as lately appeared in a
noble Gentleman of this lande now dead) but as _Fernelius_ testifieth,
hath sometimes displaced the ribbes, and sometimes broken them through
the violent motion of the heart.

This _Symptom_ is called the palpitation or beating of the heart, or
Arteries whereof _Maximillian_ the Emperour died, as _Crato_ reporteth,
and wherewith _Charles_ the fift was oftentimes molested, as _Vesalius_
writeth. It is chiefly to bee perceyued where the Arteries are great &
neare the skin: as vnder the left ribbes towards the backe, and in the
necke: as you may obserue in Maides that haue the greene sicknesse, by
the shaking and quiuering of their ruffes, if they sit close to their
neckes: where sometimes through the dilatation of the Arterie there
ariseth a [25]tumour as bigge as ones fist. This _Symptom_ is euerie
where mentioned by our [26]Authours in this disease and our dayly
experience confirmeth it.

  [25] _Aneurisms. Fernel. loco citato._

  [26] _Petrus Salius pag. 429. Skinckius de cordis palpit. obs. 211,
  item 218, 222. Forestus lib. 17 obs. 8._

This motion of the heart and Arteries in this affect of the Mother is
oftentimes diminished either in part or to sense totally. In part,
where the pulse in this disease is weake, slow, obscure, intermittent,
&c. and the whole bodie accordingly feeble and slow in euery action,
for want of influence of vitall facultie from the heart. It is totally
diminished in that _Symptom_ which is called _Syncope_ or swounding,
the very image of death, where the pulse is [27]scarcely or not at
all perceyued; the breath or respiration cleane gone: by reason that
the heart wanting his motion, hath no neede of the helpe of the lungs
to refresh it withall, all the faculties of the body fayling, it
self lying like a dead corpse three or foure houres togither, and
[28]sometimes two or three whole dayes without sense, motion, breath,
heate, or any signe of life at all (like as wee see Snakes and other
creatures to lie all the winter, as if they were dead, vnder the
earth) insomuch as diuerse [29]errors haue beene committed in laying
foorth such for dead, which haue afterwards beene found to haue life
in them, and haue risen vp in their burials, whereupon there haue
beene lawes enacted, as [30]_Mercurialis_ reporteth, that no woman
which was subiect to this disease should be buried vntil she had beene
three dayes dead. Or as [31]_Alexander Benedictus_ of _Bolonia_ sayth
72. houres, which commeth to the same reckoning. [32]_Petrus Bayrus_
setteth downe diuerse reasons why they should not be buried before
three dayes bee ended, besides the experience of some (as hee saith)
that haue beene found aliue in their graues after they had beene
buried. I will refer the reader for the reasons to the author himself,
and to [33]_Forrestus_ in his obseruations. [34]_Plinie_ maketh mention
out of _Heraclides_, of a woman who for seuen dayes together lay for
dead in a fit of the mother, and was restored againe to life: which
(saieth [35]_Marcellus Donatus_) is not to be thought a fabulous tale,
seeing it is not repugnant to the rules of Philosophie and Phisicke.
And [36]_Galen_ making mention of the verie same hystorie vnder the
name of _Apnæa_, discourseth of the reasons of it.

  [27] _Gal. loc. affect. 6.c 5. pulsum vix perceptibilem habent &c
  Item de composit. pharmac. s.l. lib. 9. in finit._

  [28] _Antho. Guaynerius. cap. de suffoc. matricĩs. Albert.
  Bottonus loco infra citato. Gal. loco citato. Altomarus loco

  [29] _Ambros. paræus li. 24.c. 10_

  [30] _De morbis muliebr: lib. 4. cap. 22. Iacobus Syluius de
  mensibus mulierum._

  [31] _De morbis medicandis. lib. 10. cap. 10._

  [32] _Practica lib. 2. cap. 17._

  [33] _Lib. 10. obser. 79. in scholiis._

  [34] _Histor. nat. lib. 7. cap. 52._

  [35] _De medica hysteria mirabili. lib. 4. ca. 11_

  [36] _6. Locorum affect. cap. 5._

[37]_Rabbi Moses_ an ancient Author in Physicke, reporteth also of a
woman, that in the fitte of the mother, did lie six dayes without sense
and motion, her Arteries being waxt hard, and she readie to be buried,
and yet recouered.

[38]_Bottonus_ a late professor of Physicke in Padua, reporteth of a
woman that beeing giuen ouer for dead in a fit of the Mother, was by
such conclusions as he tried, discouered to be yet aliue, and recouered
her former health againe by such remedies as he prescribed.

[39]_Forestus_ of _Alkmar_ in north _Holland_, but lately dead, setteth
downe the like example of another, that lay in that maner 24. houres,
and was by him restored to health againe.

  [37] _Ioh. Schinckius refert ex pictorio. obseruat. med. lib 4.
  cap. 288._

  [38] _De morbis muliebribus cap. 43._

  [39] _Obseru. li. 10. in scholiis ad obseruat. 79. Iacobus Ruffius
  testatur se plures huius mod. vidiss. muliebr. lib. 6. cap. 8._

[Sidenote: _De hominis generat. cap. 46._]

The like also he citeth out of _Leouellus_, in that place, of one
that lay with her eyes shut, and dumb a whole day, and by conuenient
remedies was deliuered from her fit, and could rehearse all that was
done about her in the time of her fit. But the most pitifull example
of all other in this kinde, is that which _Ambrose Paræe_ reporteth
of _Vesalius_ a worthie Physition, & for anatomicall dissections
much renowned, who being called to the opening of a Gentlewoman in
Spaine, which was thought to be dead through the violence of one of
these fits, began to open her, and at the second cut of the knife she
cried out, and stirred her limbes, shewing manifest signes of life
to remaine. The beholders were exceedingly amazed at the sight, and
blamed the Physition much for it: who though hee tooke her for dead,
yet tooke he great apprehension of sorrow for that accident, that he
estranged himselfe. After through griefe and remorse of conscience for
his error, pretended (as others say) a pilgrimage for the absenting
of himselfe, and therein died. Many more examples to this end could
I produce out of _Authenticall_ writers, and late experiences, if it
were free for mee to mention them: but these may suffice to shew how
wonderfully the vitall facultie is ouerthrowne in this disease, and
withall respiration, sense, motion, and all the functions of the bodie
by reason of this.

_Cap._ 4.

  _Of that kind of this disease wherein the animall facultie is

The second kind of this disease is, where the animall facultie doth
principally suffer; and it is that faculty whereby we do vnderstand,
iudge, and remember things that are profitable or hurtfull vnto vs,
whereby also we haue sense and do feele the qualities of things, and
moue to and fro, & performe diuers other voluntary actions for the
cõmoditie of the bodie. For nature had made vs but base creatures,
if she had giuen vs onely the vitall facultie barely to liue, and
the naturall to grow, and to supply the expence that is daily made
of naturall moisture: If she had not withall giuen vs knowledg and
vnderstanding of such things as we are subiect vnto, and abilitie to
moue our bodies at our pleasure, to apprehend that which is profitable
& to shun that which is offensiue, &c. And therefore as a facultie
making most for the dignitie and vse of man, it is placed principally
in the braine; from whence it disperseth his beames of influence into
euery part of the bodie, according to the seuerall vses and necessitie
of each part.

[Sidenote: _De motu musculorum lib. 2. cap. 7. 8._]

[Sidenote: _De ciuitate Dei lib. 4: Cosmoscrit. lib. 1. pag. 156._]

[Sidenote: _Medici parisienses in historia Martha. Brossier._

1. Sam. 21. 13. _Gal. lib quomodo deprehendũtur qui
agrotare se fingunt. cap. 1._]

[Sidenote: _Epidemiorum 5. R. Scot. lib. 7: cap. 1._]

[Sidenote: _Lib: 16. cap. 4._]

This animall facultie hath this peculiar difference from the vitall and
naturall faculties, that the functions of it are subiect vnto our wil,
& may be intẽded remitted, or peruerted at our pleasure, otherwise
thẽ in other faculties: For no man can make his pulse to beate as he
list, or alter the naturall functions at his will and pleasure. But
these animal functions may be abused both by our owne will, and by the
violence of some disease, and by both, as _Galen_ testifieth, _lib. 2.
de Symptomatum causis cap. 12_. That it may be abused by our owne will,
he proueth also in another place, where he bringeth an instance of a
seruant (_serui barbari_) who killed himselfe to anger his maister by
holding of his breath. S. _Augustine_ saith that he knew a man that
could make himselfe to sweate when he list, by his imagination only.
_Cornelius Gemma_ saith, that he knew one that could weepe when he
list: others that could make their bodies stiffe like an image, imitate
the voyces of all kinde of creatures, raise a hickocke, and breake
wind as often and in what manner they would. And S. _Augustine_ tels
of one that would make a kinde of musicke that way. _Adrian Turnebus_
saw a rogue that gayned much money by shewing this feate, we do also
daily see that some can counterfait madnes, some drunkennesse, some the
falling sicknesse, some palsies and trembling, some can play the fooles
and supply the roomes of innocents, some can make noyses & speake
in their bellies or throates, as those which _Hyppocrates_ calleth
_Eugastrimuthoi ventriloqui_, such as was the holy maid of Kent, and
_Mildred_ of westwall, &c. And it is strange to see how young bodies
will be bowed and writhed diuersly, as wee see in tumblers iuglers,
and such like companions. Hereupon diuers haue counterfaited diseases
as I once saw a poor fellow being arested for a smal debt coũterfaited
a fit of the falling sicknes, with strange and violent motions:
whereby the creditor in compassion was moued to release him. Being
released he was well againe, and vnto his friendes seemed to confesse
the cousonage: others haue counterfaited possessions, either vpon
meere deceit or inticed therto through the conceite of some disease
wherewith they haue beene troubled. But for this point I referre you
to the histories of _Agnes Brigs_, _Rachel Pinder_, _Martha Brossier_,
&c. _Ren. Scot_ tels of one that being blind, deafe, and dumbe, could
reade any canonicall Scripture, but no Apocripha: But was discouered by
inserting a leafe of Apocrapha: among the canonicall. Another faining
her selfe to be possessed with a diuell, would answere to any question
made in English, but vnderstood no latine. Diuers such like examples
might bee procured to shew how the animall functions may be abused
by our owne will. But against our willes this faculty doth suffer by
consent in the suffocation of the Mother diuersly according to the
varietie of offices or functions which it performeth.

[Sidenote: _Hebetudo mentis._]

[Sidenote: _Imprudentia obliuio._]

[Sidenote: _Sopor._]

[Sidenote: _Apoplexiæ._ _Epilepsia._]

[Sidenote: _Catalepsis._]

The functions of it are three, the first is called _Internall_ and
principall sence which doth gouerne and direct all the rest by
_Imagination_, _Reason_ and _Memory_: which if it bee hurt either by
imminution or deprauation or total abolishment, then the inferior
functions doe necessarily participate with the offence. They are hurt
by Imminution when a man doth not _Conceiue_, _Iudge_, or remember so
well as hee ought to doe, as in dulnesse or blockishnesse,[40] as wee
call it in vndiscretion, foolishnes or want of iudgement, in obliuion
or forgetfulnes, &c. They are abolished either in those drowsie affects
which wee call _Caros_, _Coma_, _veternus_, _Lethargus_ &c. or in
those astonishing _Symptoms_ wherein all the animall faculties are at
once taken away, sometimes with a generall resolution or palsie, as in
_Apoplexies_: sometimes with a generall conuulsion, as in the falling
sicknes: sometimes with a _Stifnesse or congelation_ of the body,
wherein they lie like an image in the same forme they were taken.

  [40] _Hypp. de morbis muliebr. lib 1 et 2. Torpor occupat caput
  mẽs percellitur et improba fit non facile intelligit. De virginum
  morbis cor fatuum fit, ex fatuitate torpor._

  _Gal. loc. affect. 6. 5. De composit. pharm. s. L. lib. 9. in fine_

  _Rhasis continẽt 22. Egineta. li. 3. ca. 71._
  _Ætius tetr. 4._
  _Serr21 4. cap. 68. paschalius lib. 1: cap. 58._
  _Valescus de Taran. Iacobus Syluius Altomam. Augeni. Aui. Fen. 21.
  3. cap. 16. tract. 4: Idem._
  _Petr. salius de catelepsi. pag. 384._

These internall sences are ouerthrowne either in part or in whole in
this suffocatiõ of the mother: and thereupon it is likened vnto these
former diseases: and this kind is accounted by _Auicen_ to be the
most grieuous of all other, where the imagination and reason is hurt:
and the other which holds them with conuulsions, contractions, &c. he
accounts to bee the milder and the more vsuall. And therefore he saith
that commonly they can remember what was done about them in their fit:
vnlesse it be of this most grieuous kinde.

[Sidenote: _Insania. Delirium. Melancholia. Furor._]

The Internall sence is depraued when a man doth imagine, iudge, or
remember thinges that are not as if they were, or things that are,
otherwise then they are indeed. Whether they do it in cogitation alone,
or do expresse it by word or deede. As we see in those fooles which
we call naturals, in mad men, in melancholike men, in those that are
furious, in such as do dote, in such as are distracted through loue,
feare, griefe, ioye, anger, hatred, &c. In some of which they will
laugh, crye, prattle, threaten, chide, or sing, &c. according to the
disposition of the party or the cause of the affect.

[Sidenote: _Vigilia. Insomnium._]

These functions are also depraued in too much wakefulnesse through
the commotion of the animall spirits, also in dreames, where somtimes
besides the deprauation of the fantasie they wil walke, talke, laugh,
crye, &c. And lastly in that disease which is called [41]_Saltus
Sa^{ti} viti_, or _Saltuosa dispositio membrorum_ wherein they will
daunce, and leape, and cannot endure to be quiet.

  [41] _Saltus viti. F. Platerus de mentis alienatione. pag. 103_

This deprauation of the internall sences, is so ordinary in the fits
of the Mother, as _Horatius Augenius Epistola_. 6. seemes to make it
of the essence of this disease, that the imagination is ever depraued
in it. But [42]_Hyppocrates_, _Galen_, _Auicen_, and most of the best
Authors in our profession, do affirme that very often there happeneth
an alienation of the minde in this disease, whereby sometimes they will
waxe furious and raging depriued of their right iudgement and of rest.

  [42] _Hippoccrat. de morbis virg. præ acutæ inflamatione infamis
  præ putredione clamat, &c De morbis muliebr. lib. 1. mente alienatur
  in hoc morbo et deliria fiunt furiousa dentibus frendet vigilabit
  anxia erit &c. Avicen loco citato facit accidere alienationem per
  communitatem cerebri, &c. Ætius garrula inquieta & iracunda fiunt.
  lib. 16. 7. 4. Hier. mercurialis morborum muliebr. lib. 4. c. 10.
  Iacobus Sylvius demensibus. Mathæus de grad. consilio. 806 8 c. 6
  historiam narrat furiosi._

[Sidenote: _Priuatio visus Auditus. Gustus. Olfactus. Tactus._]

The second function of the animall facultie is the externall sensitive
function; which giueth to the eye the facultie of seeing, to the eare
of hearing, to the tongue of tasting, to the nose of smelling and to
diuers parts of the bodie the power of feeling.

This function in all these kindes is diminished, depraued, or cleane
abolished, but especially in this disease of the mother, we do obserue
the offence which is done to the feeling facultie, when the parts are
benummed or do not feele at all, or when they feele [43]paine and
offence, or when they feele things falsely and otherwise then they are.

  [43] _Iuxta receptam a medicis sententiam dolorem hic insero licet
  videatur potius ad simpls̃ ces corporis affectus referendus._

Concerning hearing, although [44]_Hyppoc. Rhasis_ and diuers others doe
obserue that sometimes it is hindred: yet it seemes to be in the former
kinde where the internall facultie doe suffer. For _Mercatus_ puts it
as a difference from the falling sicknes, that in this suffocation of
the matrix they doe commonly heare. The priuation of the other sences
of seeing, tasting, smelling and feeling, are verie ordinarie in this
disease, as you may obserue in the Histories following, and in these

  [44] _Hyp: morb. muliebr. lib._ 0. _caligo ante oculos
  obuersatur et vertigo, oculi non acute vidẽt nilhil olfaciunt
  vocata non audit Rhasis 22. cont. in hac passione non audit
  quando datur in auribus eius vox terribilis. Ægineta loco citato.
  Instrumentorum sensus apprehensio &c. Auicen narrat plurimum eius
  quod fuit in ea nisi sit maxima et immoderata AEtius sensus et motus
  intercipiuntur. Gal. immobiles sine sensu sacẽt Horatius Angenius
  Epist. 6, Gal. de motu musc. lib. 2 cap. 6. et 8._

The third function is that which giues motion to the whole bodie. This
motion serueth either for a voluntary vse onely, or for a naturall vse
also. The motions for the voluntary vse are the free motions of the
externall members of our bodies: as to bowe the whole bodie and the
head by meanes of the backe, to apprehend with the hand, to stand and
goe with the feete and legges, to chewe with the iawes, to open & shut
the lips & eyelids, to moue the eies, &c. This functiõ is _diminished_
in that affect which we cal _lassitudo_, werines or vnweldines,
wherein we are not able to move so strongly and nimbly as we should.

[Sidenote: _Paralysis._]

It is _abolished_, either by a _resolution_ or _palsie_ where the sound
part drawes the sickly part, that is the part resolued, & depending
draws the muscles & nerues &c. or by a _Spasmus_ or _contractiõ_ of
them [45]where the sick part drawes the sound part, that is, the muscle
which is affected, drawes the member which is wel.

  [45] _Contractio. platerus. Gal. de causis morborũ
lib. 2. cap. 7. et loc. affect. li. 34._

A resolution or palsie is either generall of both sides of the bodie
[46]exempting the head, or of one side called _Hæmiplegia_, or yet more
particular of the hand, legge, finger, &c. called [47]_parapligia_.

  [46] _Petrus Salius pag. 401. tanquam leuis Apoplexiæ Fern. de
  part. morbis & sympt. li. 5. cap. 3._

  [47] _Gal. prorhet com. 2. 50. et com. 3. 26. de victus rat. tom.
  4. 27. de morb. vulg. com. 2. 56_ _Gybbus._ _Trismos._
  _Tortura oris._ _Strabismus._ _Spasmus Cynicus._

A _Contraction_ or _Spasmus_ is also of like sortes, sometimes the
bodie is held vpright and cannot be bowed any way in that affect which
is called _Tetanos_, sometimes it is bowed forwardes _Emprostotonos_
sometimes backward _Opistotonos_, somtimes the back is crookt in some
part of it, as in _Gibbo_, sometimes the iawes, lips, face, eyelids,
&c. are contracted, wherby they make many strange faces and mouthes
sometimes as though they laughed or wept, sometimes holding their
mouthes open or awry, their eyes staring, &c. Sometimes the handes,
armes, legges, fingers, toes, &c. are contracted, sometimes particular
muscles in the sides, backe, armes, legs, &c. one or more at once, as
in crampes.

[Sidenote: _Marcellus Doc natus. li. 2. ca. 4_]

[Sidenote: _Felix Platerus de motu deprauato. pag. 401._]

It is _depraued_ where the motions are immoderate, peruerse,
inordinate, or indecẽt, as when they are _vnquiet_, & cannot abstaine
frõ motions and gestures, casting their armes and legges to and fro,
vp and downe, dauncing, capring, vawting, fencing, and in diuerse
maners forming their motions. Also in _Convulsions_ of the members,
where they are shaken and pulled by inordinate motions, as wee see in
the falling sicknesse. Also in _trembling_, _palpitation_, _rigor_
where the teeth do chatter, horror where the haire standes vpright,
stretching, yawning, gasping twinckling of the eyes, &c. These
impediments and deprauations of motion are dayly obserued in vterne
affects: as may appeare by these testimonies. _Hyppocrat. de morbi
muliebr. lib. 1. Albas oculorum partes subuertit, dentibus frendet,
& similis fit his qui herculeo morbo detinentur. Item fit cõuulsio
fortis articulorum corporis, claudam facit aut impotentem præ rigore,
alias atque alias seipsam iactabit. Horror. Erectæ ceruicis spiratio
ipsam tenet, & quicquid ederit aut biberit ipsam molestat. Torpor
occupat manus & inguina, & crura & poplites. Magnis pedumigitis
conuelluntur gybbosa fit, de nat. muliebr. Gal. lib. de semine cap.
3. Tensiones lumborum & manuum, & pedum viduam apprehendebant loc.
affect. 6. 5. Aliis crura & bracchia contrahuntur. Auicenna. minor
suffocationum est quæ facit accidere spasmum & tetanum, sine nocumento
in ratione & sensu. Quandoque claudit oculos & non aperit eos. Stridor
dentium, percussio oculorum, & motus inuoluntarius lacertorum. Rhasis,
Stridor dentium cum spasmo & torquedine extremitatum, dolores fortes
adeo vt mulierem torquere faciant vndique & caput genibus implicari.
&c. Mesue loco superius citato. Aetius. Oculi post multam grauitatem
attolluntur, vterus paulatim laxatur & intellectum & sensum recipit.

[Sidenote: _Suffocatio. Anthon. Guaynerius. cap. de suffocatione._]

[Sidenote: _Priuatio vocis._]

The animall motions which doe serue for naturall vse, haue their power
from the animall facultie, but their vrging and prouoking and cause
from the naturall, and are either _Respiration_, _Ingestion_, _or
Excretion_. Respiration hath annexed vnto it voyce, and speach, this is
diminished or abolished in _Suffocation_ or choaking, from whence this
disease which we intreat of taketh his name, as from the most cõmon
_Symptom_ which appeareth in it. In _difficulty_ of breathing. In
priuation of _voyce and speach_.

[Sidenote: _Citæ respiratio, suspirium. Oscitatio. Singultus.
Sternutatio, Ructus, Tusus. Deglutitio. Excretio._]

It is depraued when it is done immoderately or inordinately, whether
it be voluntarie, or inuoluntarie, as in _shortnesse of breath_,
_sighing_, _yawning_, _the hickock_, _sneesing_, _coughing_,
_belching_, _vomiting_, _making of noyses_, _blowing_, _and reaching_,

_Ingestion, or swallowing_, is also hurt in this affect, when either
they cannot swallow meate, or drinke at all, or with great difficultie.

_Excretion_ is also hurt in this case, by vomit, seege or vrine, &c.
when either they cannot performe it being prouoked, or do it out of
season, or more then is conuenient. &c.

These _Symptoms_ also appeare in the Suffocation of the Mother.
_Hyppocrat. de nat. muliebri. Muta deprepentè fit. de morbis muliebr.
lingua ipsius refrenatur & hanc non claram habet. Aliquibus etiam vocis
priuatio. Spiritus sublimis it, et suffocatio et anhelatio densa ipsam
corripit. De nat. muliebr. Tussis detinet & contabiscit & videtur
peripnumonia esse, &c. Gal. 9. de compis. Pb. s.l. aliquibus vox
intercipitur. loc. affect. 6. 5. aliæ interceptas habent spirationes
aliæ suffocationes, &c. Hyppoc. de nat. muliebr. quicquid ederit
aut biberit ipsam molestat. Auicen. Abscinditur loquela &c. Rhasis.
Strictura anhelitus, squinantia, peripneumonia, apostema in gutture ex
cõmunicatione Diaphragmatis cum matrice. Gal. Loco citato humiditas
quædam ê locis muliebribus excurrit. &c. Rondalat. cap. 69. Hollerius.
cap. 59. Syluius suspirium. Montagnana consilio. 225._

[Sidenote: _De morbis internis lib. 1. ca. 59. in scholiis._]

[Sidenote: _Lib. 28. obseru 26._]

[Sidenote: _Aliam egregiã motuum cõvulsiuorũ ab vtero hystor. vide
apud eundem. li. 10. obser. 116 Lib. 26. cap. 16._]

These motions as they belong to the animall facultie are principally
hurt by _Resolution_, _contraction_, or _conuulsion_, according as the
simple motions are, and therefore we shall not need to stand any longer
vppon them in this place: as they belong vnto the naturall facultie,
and do receyue offence in that respect shall be declared hereafter
in the third general faculty. In the mean time let vs produce some
examples of this 2. kind of _Suffocation_, where the animall faculty
doth principally suffer: for examples many times do perswade more
then doctrine. _Hollerius_ reporteth that the gouernour of _Roan_ in
France had two daughters which were helde with these fits, in such
sort as they would laugh an houre or two togither, and confessed that
they could not refraine from laughing, although diuerse means to that
end were vsed, both by entreaty, and by threates. He tels also of a
gentlewoman _de Rochpot_, who being in these fits would raue, laugh,
& weep, her eies being shut. _Forestus_ maketh mention of one _Alcida
Theodorici at Alkmare_ a yong lusty maid who was held 24. houres in a
most grieuous fit of the mother, wherin she lay as if she had beene
halfe dead, hearing what was said about her, but could not speake, nor
enioy her other senses. Sometimes she would bee pulled as if she had
the falling sickenesse, sometimes would lie still as if she were in an
_Apoplexie_, sometimes she would onely stirre her legges, the rest of
her bodie being dull: and although she could not speake, yet she would
crie and laugh by turnes, and then be sullen and dumpish, as if she
were dead againe.

_Alexander Benedictus veronensis_ testifieth, that he saw a woman in
a fit of the Mother, that was besides her selfe, and would sometimes
laugh & sometimes crie. Those that attended her, applied Partrige
feathers vpon coales vnto her nostrilles, and by chance through want of
care there fell a great coale out of the Chafingdish into her bosome,
where it burnt her, and made a great blister, but she perceyued it not
vntill the next day, and then complained of her breasts. My selfe had a
patient in this Citie yet liuing and in good health (whome I will name
vnto any whome it may concerne) that endured a violent fitte of the
Mother a whole day together: wherein shee had many strong conuulsions,
and sometimes did lie as if she had beene dead. Insomuch as the
midwiues would haue giuen her ouer, and imputed ignorance vnto mee that
I woulde attempt any thing for her recouerie. But her husband being
perswaded by me to make triall of some meanes which I had prescribed
for her, shee was within three or foure houres deliuered of a childe;
yet knew not of it, vntill shee was throughly recouered of her fit,
which was fourteene or fifteene houres after, and then she asked her
husband what was become of her great bellie. I could rehearse two
other such like examples within this citie, which happened not many
moneths since.

But we had of late a most rare example of this disease in an Essex
Gentlewoman of good note, who being once frighted by squibs, fell into
these fits of the Mother, which held her euery day, and whensoeuer
else she did eate any comfortable meat, for the space of fifteene or
sexteene yeares togither, with such violent conuulsions, as fiue or six
strong men could scarce hold her downe. Sometimes her limbes would be
contracted, sometimes perticular Muscles, which would cause swellings
in diuerse parts of her bodie, sometimes she would be without all maner
of sense. And being made beleeue by a stranger Physition that she was
bewitched, her fits increased vpon her, and grew to be stronger than

_Bartholomeus Montagnana_ reciteth vp 31. seuerall _Symptoms_ of this
disease which hee obserued in a Gentlewoman which was his patient.
Conuulsions, swoundings, choaking in the throate, sadnesse and
lamentation, coldnes ouer her whole bodie, dumbnesse, and yet could
heare, drowsinesse, beating of the heart, trembling of the handes,
contraction of the fingers, &c.

It were in vaine to heape vp many examples to this purpose, seeing
our daily experience doth yeeld vs sufficient store of proofe of the
varietie of these _Symptoms_ in the animall facultie.

_Cap. 5._

  _Of that kind wherein the naturall facultie is offended._

The third kinde of this disease is, where the naturall facultie doth
principally suffer. This facultie is of great necessitie for the
maintenaunce of mankinde and according to the diuerse vses thereof is
distinguished. For seeing that nature bringes vs not forth into the
world perfect men, in that ripenesse and integritie, of all humaine
actions which afterwards we attaine vnto, when wee come to full growth,
it was meete to be prouided of such a facultie in our bodies as might
encrease our stature, & strengthen the instruments of the whole body,
for the better perfection of the actions thereof. And this is called
_facultas auctrix_. Seeing also that wee are made of a fluxible moulde
which wasteth and spendeth it selfe many wayes, whereby it standeth
in neede of continuall refection and replie: Therefore it was meete
to be furnished with such a facultie as might repaire the decay and
expence of our substance, by yeelding continually apt matter for the
nourishment of the bodie. And that is called _facultas altrix_. And
thirdly seeing, notwithstanding our bodies are continually nourished
with the best food, yet they must once die as well as other inferiour
creatures doe: therefore God hath indued vs as well as other creatures
with the facultie of generation: whereby wee may bee able to make our
kind to continue as long as the world shall endure.

[Sidenote: _Gal. de tremor. palp. tis. &c. cap. 2. sensibus non

These three naturall faculties haue diuerse others attending vpon
them, as the faculties of _Attraction_, _Retention_, _Concoction_,
_Expulsion_, _Alteration_, _Formation_, _&c._ Which I will for breuitie
sake ouerpasse with their bare mention, because the _Symptoms_ of these
faculties are not so euident to the beholders eye, nor so straunge
as those of the vitall and animall faculties are, yet that these are
also hurt in the suffocation of the Mother, appeareth both by dayly
obseruation, and by the authorities of all both auncient and late
physitions who haue written of this disease.

[Sidenote: Some of these are _Symptomata in qualitate mutata_, or _in
excremento vitiato_: but because they are in the naturall parts, and
arising from errors of that facultie, I haue inserted them here.]

And to this place may we referre those accidents often mentioned in
this disease. [48]_Gnawing in the stomacke_, and paines in diuerse
partes of the bodie, breaking of wind, vomiting, purging by siege,
vrin, or other excretion, loathing of meate, thirst, extraordinarie
hunger, swelling in the throat, swelling in the body, in the feet,
obstructions in the vaines, cõsumptions, tumors, feuers, priuation
of voice, palenesse of colour, rumbling and noise in the belly or
[49]throat, like vnto frogs, snakes, or other creatures, or as if they
would speake as _Hippocrates_ reporteth of _Polymarchus_ wife.

  [48] _Hypp. de morbis mulieb. lib. 1 Rhasis con. li. 22. Fernel.
  de partium morb. lib. 6. cap. 16. Mercatus lib. 2. cap. 2. & 3.
  Bottonus, & Mercurialis locis citatis. Syluius de mensibus._

  [49] _Schenkius obser. de ptisi obser. 137. Cornel. Gema. Cosmocr.
  Hyppocrat. Epidem. 5. expectore obstrepebat. &c._

And these are three principall kindes of this disease wherevnto most
of the _symptoms_ which euer do appeare therein may be referred.

Cap. _6._

  _Of the causes of this disease._

The causes of this disease and of the _Symptoms_ belonging therunto,
haue euer bin found hard to be described particularly: and especially
in a vulgar tongue, I hold it not meete to discourse to freely of
such matters, and therefore I doe craue pardon if I do but slenderly
ouerpasse some poynts which might be otherwise more largely stood vpon

The causes of this disease are either internall, or external. The
internall causes may be any thing contained within the bodie, as
spirit, blood, humors excrements, &c. whereby this part is apt to be
offended, but principally they are referred vnto these two, [50]blood,
and nature.

  [50] _Gal. loc. affec. 6. cap. 5. Hollerius, de morbis internis.
  lib. 1. cap. 59._

  _Paschalius li. 1. cap. 57._

  _Altomarus. ca. I 10. Item de vtero gerentibus. cap. 2._

  _Jacobus Syluius de mensibus._

  _Hor. Augen^{ius} epist. 6._

  _Cardanus de causis, &c. morborum. cap. 114._

Blood is that humor wherwith we are nourished: without which the infant
in the mothers wombe could neither grow & increase in bignesse, nor
yet liue: and therefore it was necessarie that those that were fit for
generation, should be supplied with sufficient store of this humor,
for the vse of this part wherin the infãt is to be nourished, for
which cause there are large vaines & arteries deriued vnto it for the
conueyance of bloud thereunto, and there is greater provision thereof
made in womens bodies then in mens: least this part should bee forced
to withdraw nourishment from other parts of the bodie, and so leave
them weake and consuming.

[Sidenote: _Defectus._]

[Sidenote: _Hollerius et Rondelet loci citatis._]

[Sidenote: _Comment. 2 in lib. 1. Hypp de morb. muliebr._]

[Sidenote: _Lib. 4. cap. 22._]

[Sidenote: _2.loc. affect._]

But this prouision of nature is oftentimes defectiue: as when it
is cut off by violent causes, and the part left destitute of this
familiar humor, which should serue both for the comfort of the
infant, and of the part it selfe: which finding offence thereby doth
communicate it vnto the other partes with which it hath affinitie
according to _Hyppocrates_ doctrine. _1. Morborum muliebrium_, and
_Aristotle, de generat. animal. cap. 11. vteri euacuati sursum
ascendunt & præfocationes faciunt. Cordæus_ giues vs an example of one
who by chaunce cutting a vaine in her leg, whereupon she did bleede
plentifully, fell into a fit of the Mother, and by moist and nourishing
diet was recouered. The reason whereof _Hyppocrates_ referreth to the
ouerdrying of those parts through large euacuation of bloud, wherby
the matrix doth labour by such motion as it hath to supply it selfe
with moysture from other parts of the body: or as _Mercurialis_ doth
enterpret it, doth impart by communitie (as is aforesaid) the offensive
qualitie vnto the braine, and by that meanes procures convulsions,
&c. _Gallen_ refferreth it into the ouercooling of those parts which
necessarily must follow a large euacuation of bloud, which coldenesse
being very offensive vnto the nerues and neruous partes by consent and
compassion offendeth the braine also, and by that meanes may procure
the former _Symptoms_.

[Sidenote: _Excesses._]

[Sidenote: _Gal. loc. affect. 6_

_Pereda in paschalium lib. 1. cap. 58._



And as the want and scarsitie of bloud may procure this griefe, so the
abundance & excesse thereof doth more commonly cause it, where the
patients do want those monethly euacuatiõs which should discharge
their bodies of this superfluitie: as we see in strong and lustie
maidens, who hauing ease and good fare inough, haue their vaines filled
with plenty of bloud, which wanting sufficient vent distẽdeth them in
bulck and thicknes, and so contracteth them in their length, whereby
the matrix is drawne vpwards or sidewards, according as the repletion
is, whereupon followeth a compression of the neighbour parts, as of
the midrif which causeth shortnes of breath, by straightning the
instruments of respiration of their due scope.

But if this bloud wanting his proper vse doe degenerate into the nature
of an excrement, then it offendeth in qualitie as well as in excesse,
and being detayned in the bodie, causeth diuers kinds of _Symptoms_,
according to the qualitie and degree of the distemperature thereof.

[Sidenote: _Alteratio._]

[Sidenote: _Hypp. de morbis virginum._

_Altomarus Corruptio._]

[Sidenote: _Mercatus loco citato._]

This distemperature is either in manifest qualities, of heate,
colde, moisture, drines, according vnto which it is said to be,
_Melancholicke_, _Flegmaticke_, _Choloricke_, _&c._ producing
_Symptoms_ of the like nature, or in corruption and putrefactiõ of
this bloud which breedeth diuers strange kinds of distẽperatures,
according to the diuersity of the humor putrefied, the degree of
putrefaction or the condition of the cause or author thereof.

[Sidenote: _Rondelarius c. 69. Platerus._

_Pereda in pas. et alia._

_Valesius de Tarranta. lib. 6._

 _Valesius testatur se deprehendisse circa vterũ
hystericarũ croceum humorem fatidissimũ &c. lib. 5. c. 15._

_Mathaus de grad. in 9. Rhasis. ca. 28. Item consilio 84._





_Bottonus locis citatis._

_Hercules Saxonia de plica. ca 14. et. 34._]

The other substance which most commonly is found culpable of this
disease, is nature or _sperma_: which besides the suspition of
superfluitie in some persons, may also receiue diuers sortes of
alteration, and likewise of corruption, able to worke most strange and
grieuous accidents in our bodies. For as it is a substance of greatest
perfection & puritie so long as it retayneth his natiue integritie: So
being depraued or corrupted, it passeth all the humors of our bodie,
in venom and malignitie. For it must needs be a vehement and an impure
cause that shal corrupt so pure a substance, which would easily resist
any weake assault: and a substance so pure and full of spirits as
this is, must needes proue most malitious vnto the bodie when it is
corrupted. And therefore it is compared to the venom of a serpent, a
Scorpion, a Torpido, a madde dogge, &c. which in a small quantitie is
able to destroy or depraue all the faculties of our bodies at once.

[Sidenote: _Syluius, &c._]

_Galen_ comparing the corruption of these two together, affirmeth that
although from the putrefaction of bloud, diuers most terrible accidents
doe arise, yet they are not so deadly as those which proceede from the
corruption of nature; and proueth it by this obseruation that diuers
women enioying the benefit of mariage, yet through the suppression
of their ordinary euacuation falling into this disease, had their
respiration and vitall faculties vntouched, although otherwise they
were most grieuously affected.

Others also hauing those ordinarie matters in good sorte, yet being
widdowes and taken with this grief haue felt decay in those faculties
as well as in the rest.

How these two substances by consent may affect the whole bodie
according to their seuerall natures, hath beene shewed before: But one
scruple remaineth here to be discussed, namely how this venemous matter
may lurke so long in our bodies in silence not shewing it self but at
certaine times only.

[Sidenote: _Loc. affect. 6. 5. Petrus Salius de affect. particu.
laribus pa. 326_]

[Sidenote: _Altomarus._]

[Sidenote: _Ga. loc. affect. 6 Felix Platerus de causis febrium. pag.
63. 65 66. &c. Mercatus. Fernel. patholog. li. 6, cap. 16_]

_Galen_ in the former place declareth this by the example of a mad
dogge, whose venom being receiued of us, although but by the foame
of his mouth, will remaine sometimes sixe moneths within our bodies
vndiscouered, and then hauing gotten more strength and ripenes vnto it
selfe, and opportunitie of conuaying his euil quallity vnto the parts,
breaketh forth to open view by diminishing or peruerting the faculties
of those parts. I had once a patient in Kent who feeding vpon a mad
hogge which hee had killed for couetousnesse sake, found himselfe
distempered therewith at the first, but within fiue or sixe moneths
after grew suddenly to be starke madde, and before his death, being
by Phisicke restored to some reasonable vnderstanding, he confessed
the eating of that hogge to haue beene the true cause of his disease.
Diuers reasons may be yeelded of this as well as of the fits of
intermittent agues of _Epilepsies_, of sweating, &c. which oftentimes
haue their due recourse by the yeare, moneth, weeke, day or houre,
according to the nature of the humor: which being crude expecteth his
concoction in our bodies and giues no signe of his presence vntill
such a proportion of it be digested and resolued into vapours, as for
the offẽce therof the part affected is not able to brooke and for
the weaknesse of the expulsiue facultie not able to auoide out of the
bodie: but filling the vaines, arteries, and the habit of the body, is
communicated to the principall parts; diminishing or deprauing their
functions so long, vntill that portion of vapours be discussed through
naturall heate: and ceasing againe so long vntill by fermentation and
concoction, another portion of the corrupt humor shall be digested.

[Sidenote: _Quia multum. Quia prauum. Quia insuetũ._]

The vniformitie of this humor and of the heate of concoction causeth
the vniformitie of fits. And this is the cause of the due periods or
circuites which oftentimes are obserued in this disease, whereof wee
haue spoken before: 2 according also to the condition of the part
affected, which seruing as an euacuatorie to the whole bodie, is
accustomed to such kind of humors and therefore can endure them better
then other parts can. And this is another cause why this humor giues
no signe of his presence vntill it may communicate with the principall
partes: which are soone offended either with the plenty of those
vapours, or with the malignity, or with the vnwonted and vnaccustomed
approach of them.

The externall causes of this disease are either such things as are
ordinary and necessary for our life and which we cannot shun, as our
meate and drink, motion and rest, sleepe and watching, euacuation
and perturbations of the minde: or such things as happen vnto vs
accidentally, and may bee shunned by vs, as bathes, ointments,
plaisters, cloathes, smelles or vapours, medicines, venus, noyses,
riding, swimming, sayling, wounds, contusions, falles, biting of
venomous beasts, &c. which may be also referred to the former kindes.
These and such like as they are the externall causes of all diseases,
our bodies being subiect to be hurt and offended by euery one of them:
so they are oftentimes accessary to this particular disease.

[Sidenote: _Fernel. li. 1. de morborũ causis._]

The aire which compasseth our bodies and which we breath into our
bodies is the occasion of many infirmities in vs, if either it be
distempered in quallitie or corrupted in substance, or suddenly
altered. And this may be the cause why women are more subiect vnto this
disease at one time of the yeare than at another, according to the
constitution of the ayre: as in the winter time, by reason of colde
and moyst weather the humors of our bodies are increased and made more
crude and grose, and our pores stopped, whereby expiration is hindered,

[Sidenote: _Mathaus de gradi. Mercat. Rondel. cap. 69_]

[Sidenote: _Hier. Mercuria_]

But especially wee doe obserue that breathing in of sweete sauours doth
commonly procure these fittes, either for that the matrix by a naturall
propertie is delighted with sweete sauoures, as the liuer and spleene
with sweete meates, or because the animall spirites of the braine
beeing thereby stirred vp to motion, doe by consent affect the matrix
with the like.

[Sidenote: _Plater. pa. 443_

_Iacobus Ruffius de muliebribus lib. 6. cap. 8_

_Syluius Guaynerius._]

And therefore wee doe especially forbid that they may not smell
vnto any sweet thing that are subiect vnto this griefe: but rather
vnto euill sauoures: which as _Platerus_ thinkes by stirring vp the
expulsiue facultie of the matrix, are a meanes of the shortening of the

Meate and drinke is the Mother of most diseases, whatsoeuer the Father
bee, for the constitution of the humors of our bodies is according to
that which feedes vs. And therefore it is reckoned as a principall
externall cause of diseases.

[Sidenote: _De nat. muliebri. Lib. 2. obseru. 28._

_Hypp. libro citato quicquid ederit aut liberit ipsam molestat_]

And _Hyppocrates_ in this disease forbids sweete and fatte meats (_a
dulcibus et pinguibus abstineat, donec sana sit_) _Forrestus_ telles vs
of a Bruers wife of _Delft_, who could neuer eate or drinke any thing
that was sweete or pleasant but her fit would take her a fresh, and
thereuppon was faine to mixe wormewood with euery thing that she did
eate or drinke.

[Sidenote: _Heurnius de morbis capitis pag. 310._]

The _Essex_ Gentlewoman of whome I spake before, could neuer take any
comfortable sustenance, but she was sure to haue a fit of the mother.
The reason of this may be the same which we haue alleaged of sweet

The errours about euacuation are also an externall cause of diseases,
and doe breed an internall cause afterwardes.

[Sidenote: _Altomarus._]

[Sidenote: _Hollerius cap. 59. Rond. c. 69._]

As in this disease the want of due and monethly euacuation, or the
want of the benefit of marriage in such as haue beene accustomed or
are apt thereunto, breeds a congestiõ of humors about that part,
which increasing or corrupting in the place, causeth this disease.
And therefore we do obserue that maidens and widowes are most subiect
thereunto. Motion and rest being well ordered do preserue health,
but being disordered do breed diseases, especially to much rest and
slothfulnesse is a meanes of this griefe, by ingendering crudities
and obstructions in womens bodies, by dulling the spirits and cooling
naturall heate, &c. So likewise sleepe and watching, the one by
benumming, the other by dissipation of the spirits and natural heate,
may occasion this griefe.

[Sidenote: _Hinc Cicero Tusculanarum 3. perturbationes animi, morbos

Lastly the perturbations of the minde are oftentimes to blame both
for this and many other diseases. For seeing we are not maisters of
our owne affections, wee are like battered Citties without walles,
or shippes tossed in the Sea, exposed to all maner of assaults and
daungers, euen to the ouerthrow of our owne bodies.

We haue infinite examples among our [51]Historiographers, and
[52]Phisitions of such as haue dyed vpon ioy, griefe, loue, feare,
shame, and such like perturbations of the mind: and of others
that vpon the same causes haue fallen into grieuous diseases: as
[53]women deliuered of their children before their time, vpon feare,
anger, griefe, &c. others taken with the [54]Falling sickenesse,
[55]Apoplexies, [56]Madnesse, [57]Swounding, [58]Palsies, and diuerse
such like infirmities vpon the like causes.

  [51] _Plinium. valer. max. Volateranum. Pontanum. Landum, Gellium,

  [52] **_Cornex lib. 1 consultat. med. cap. 3._

  _Gal. 2. Sympt. causis cap. 5. de præcognit. ca. 6 Beniuenius._

  [53] _Gal. in 5. Aphorism. 45. Amatus lusit. Cent. 3._

  [54] _Gal. loc. affec. 5. de Grammatico Ioh. Montanus cõsilio.
  50 Matheus de grad. de proprio filio. cap. de Epilepsia._

  _Amatus lusit. cent. 2. cap. 90._

  [55] _Procopius de bello Gothorum lib. 1. Amatus lusit. cent. 3._

  [56] _Christoph. 'a Vega. li. 4. ca. 14 Corn. Celsus._

  [57] _Gal. loco cita._

  [58] _Aretæus lib. 5. cap. 7._

And concerning this disease whereof we doe intreate, [59]_Iohannes
Montanus_ tels vs of a patient of his, who fell into the fits of the
Mother vppon iealousie. [60]_Forrestus_ of another, who had her fits
whensoeuer shee was angred: and of another that vpon loue fell into
this disease. My selfe do know a Gentlewoman, who upon the sight of
one particular man would alwaies feele an vterin affect: and another
that vpon feare of being chidden, or seeing another in the fit of the
mother, would also fall into it her selfe.

  [59] _Consilio 311._

  [60] _Lib. 28. obser. 28. lib. 10. obseru. 30._

Cap. 7.

  _Of the cure of this disease, so much as belongeth to the friends
  and attendants to performe._

The signes of this disease, seeing they are drawne principally from the
causes and _Symptoms_ before declared shall not neede any particular
discourse, especially considering the vse of them belongeth properly
to the Physition, to direct him in his cure. And therefore I thinke
good to ease my selfe of this labour, which would bee altogether
vnprofitable to the reader.

[Sidenote: _Rondeltius Hollerius._]

Concerning the cure also I thinke it not meete to say more then may
concerne the friends and assistants vnto the patient to looke vnto:
referring Physitions workes vnto Physitions. There are some things
by the friendes to bee performed vnto the patient in regard of the
[61]presẽt fit, & some things in regard of the cause. In the fit
let the bodies bee kept [62]vpright, straight laced, and the belly &
throat held downe with ones hand. Let heed be taken that they hurt not
themselues by biting their fingers, striking their armes & legs against
hard things, &c. apply euil smels to their nostrils, and sweet smels
beneath [63]tie their legs hard with a garter for reuulsion sake, &c.

  [61] _Valetius in Hollerium. c. 59 Valescius di Taranta. lib. 6._

  [62] _Paschal. li. 1 ca. 57. Altomar._

  [63] _Rhasis ad Almansor. cap. 28._

Out of the fit, in regard of _Externall_ causes, remoue from them all
occasions of breeding or increasing the disease: as sweet sauors,
pleasant meats and drinks, much rest and slouthfulnesse, &c. Also
if [64]discontinuance of any thing accustomed bee the cause of this
disease, bring it into custome againe: if want of any thing necessary
for their health, let it be supplied, [65]let their diet be sparing
and vpon cooling things, let them vse much fasting and prayer, and all
other meanes to pull downe their bodies: and contrariwise abstaine
from egges, wine, flesh, &c. If the perturbations of the mind be any
occasion hereof, let them haue their proper remedies, as anger and
iealousie are to be appeased by good counsell and perswasions: hatred
and malice by religious instructions, feare by incouragements, loue
[66]by inducing hatred, or [67]by permitting them to enioy their
desires, &c. _Galen_ boasteth that he did euery yeare cure many
diseases by this stratagem of moderating the perturbations of the mind
by the example of _Æsculapius_ who deuised many songs and ridiculous
pastimes for that purpose. To which end also other phisitions haue vsed
diuers sorts of fallacies to encounter the melancholike conceits of
their patients. _Cardan_ tels of a Gentlewoman, who finding her self
vexed with many grieuous _Symptoms_, imagined that the Diuell was the
author thereof, and by _Iosephus Niger_ was cured by procuring her son
to make her beleeue that he saw three diuels in her looking glasse,
& one great one to driue them out. Another like policie _Marcellus
Donatus_ tells vs of, which a Physition vsed towardes the Countesse
of _Mantua_, who being in that disease which we call _melancholia
Hyppocondriaca_ did verily beleeue that she was bewitched, and was
cured by conueying of nayles, needles, feathers, and such like things
into her close stoole when shee tooke physicke, making her beleeue that
they came out of her bodie. The like there he mentioneth also out of
_Trallian_, of a woman who did thinke that she had a serpent within
her, and was cured by the like meanes.

  [64] _Hollerius nullum remedium melius marito. Valescus de taranta,
  Syluius: si nubilis est nec monialis nubat si non libet aut non licet
  nubere vtatur frigidis &c._

  _Mat. Rochius de morb. mal. cap. 5._

  _Guaynerius suppositio in hoc casu principatũ obtinet, &c._

  [65] _Valetius in Holl. Cap. 59. istud genus demonii non eiicitur
  nisi multo ieiunio._

  _Paschali. Sinõ posit vti viro præcibus & ieiunio curabitur._

  _Guaynerius. Curpus macerãtibus vtatur._

  [66] _Auicen, Fen. 1 3. c. 1. 4. tract. 4. de Ylisco._

  [67] _Aretæus. lib. 1. cap. 5. De sani tuend. lib. 1. cap. 11. De
  subtilit. l. 19 De medica historia mirabili. lib. 2. cap. 1._

[Sidenote: _Lib de incant. adiuratione, &c._]

So that if we cannot moderate these perturbations of the minde, by
reason and perswasions, or by alluring their mindes another way, we may
politikely confirme them in their fantasies, that wee may the better
fasten some cure vpon them: as _Constantinus Affricanus_ (if it be
his booke which is inserted among _Galens_ workes, _De incantatione,
adiuratione &c._) affirmeth, and practized with good successe, vpon one
who was _impotens ad Venerem_, & thought himselfe bewitched therewith,
by reading vnto him a foolish medicine out of _Cleopatra_, made with a
crowes gall, and oyle: whereof the patient tooke so great conceit, that
vpon the vse of it he presently recouered his strength and abilitie

[Sidenote: _Si quis incantationem sibi prodesse confidat, qualisicũq;
sit, cum tamen suu. it. li. 1. proximé citato._]

[Sidenote: _4. Natural. 6._]

The like opinion is to bee helde of all those superstitious remedies
which haue crept into our profession, of Charmes, Exorcismes,
Cõstellations, Characters, Periapts, Amulets, Incense, Holie water,
clouts crossed and folded superstitiously, repeating of a certaine
number and forme of prayers or Aue Maries, offering to certaine
Saintes, pissing through the wedding Ring, and a hundred such like
toyes and gambols: which when they preuaile in the cure of diseases,
it is not for any supernaturall vertue in them, either from God or
from the diuell (although perhaps the Diuell may haue a collaterall
intent or worke therein, namely to drawe vs vnto superstition) but by
reason of the confident perswasion which melancholike and passionate
people may haue in them: according to the saying of _Auicen_, that
the confidence of the patient in the meanes vsed is oftentimes more
auailable to cure diseases then all other remedies whatsoeuer.

Another course hath beene taken sometimes in these cases, by remouing
the cause of these affections, or by inducing of other perturbations
of a diuerse nature. Whereby as (experience teacheth vs) most grieuous
diseases haue beene oftentimes cured beyond expectation.

A yong man falling out of fauour with his father, fell thereupon
into the fits of the falling sicknesse, and continued long and often
molested there with; vntill a reconciliation was wrought with his
father: who sending him a kind letter to that effect, the yong man was
presently deliuered from that fearefull disease.

A yong Maiden also vpon some passion of the minde, as it was credibly
reported, fell into these fits of the Mother, and being in one of them,
a Physition then present modestly put his hand vnder her cloathes to
feele a windie tumor which shee then had in her backe. But a Surgeon
there also present not contented with that maner of examination,
offered to take vp her cloathes, and to see it bare: whereupon the
Maid being greatly offended, tooke such indignation at it, as it did
put her presently out of her fit.

And it is no maruel that the affections of the mind doe beare such
rule in this disease, seeing we doe obserue that most commonly besides
the indisposition of the bodie: here is also some Melancholike or
capricious conceit ioyned withall of loue, feare, hatred, iealousie,
discontentment, witchcraft, poysoning, &c. which being by policie
or good instructions and perswasions remoued, the disease is easily

Other matters of gouernment of them either in the fit or out of the
fit, togither with the cure in regard of the internall causes, because
they are properly belonging to the Physition, I do purposely omit.


 Faults escaped.

 _Fol. 1. b. lin. 22. dele one._

 _Fol. 3. a. lin. 27. remoted for remoued._

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