Monday, April 02, 2007

Just Add Water: Make Your Own FOOL!

"The popularity of dwarfs was so great that in Europe and South America the pratice of artificially stunting children arose to keep up with the demand [of using dwarfs and hunchbacks as court jesters].... According to a miscellany of 1670, dwarfs could be created by anointing babies' spines with the grease of bats, moles, and dormice, while more palatable prescriptions used drugs such as the aptly named dwarf elder, knotgrass, and daisy juice and roots mixed with milk to stunt growth. Children were kidnapped or bought to be turned into artificial dwarfs, and it was in Italy and Spain that the pratice was most common, its perpetrators in Spain being called comprachicos, or 'child-buyers.' The practice was clearly known in England, as Lysander in A Midsummer Night's Dream testifies: 'Get you gone, you dwarf; / You minimus, of hindering knot-grass made; / You bead, you acorn!' "

Creepy.

This passage reminded me of Ryan's image of the Ship of Fools ganging up on an unsuspecting individual and making them deformed (is that how you described it?)

Yeah. Creepy.

2 Comments:

Blogger evandebacle said...

This is exactly how the Binewski Fabulon in Geek Love came to be. I wonder if there is a fools in love angle to be taken from that book.

12:19 PM  
Blogger Luke Holladay said...

Ah, hindering knotgrass, I get it now. I played that role and never could figure out exactly what that meant. Weird indeed.

2:50 PM  

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