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Ointment killings


AnjelWolf

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Back in the day, when ?maleficia? (inflicting harm/death, etc.) was strongly associated with witches, one of the forms most strongly associated with this was ointments.

 

These ointments consisted of a base mixed with different roots/flowers/leaves/animal parts/metals/stones, etc.

 

Amongst the list of ingredients that were available and widely used were the following: Water Hemlock, Poplar Leaves, Soot and Belladonna.

 

One ingredient that was directly linked to these ointments was fat from roasted infants.

 

It was said that witches would dig up the bodies of infants from their graves and use them, as well as digging other bodies up as they felt the need.

 

The methods in which these ointments were used were to apply them to the bodies of sleeping victims, and/or applied to objects in which the intended victims would surely handle with their hands.

 

Because the ointments spread diseases, it was also linked to outbreaks of plagues.

 

During 1630, in Milan, an outbreak of a plague was believed to have been the result of witches smearing the walls of the city ointments.

 

Those suspected of doing this was grossly tortured and executed for their acts.

 

 

 

 

***Personal Note***

 

My mother used to use fat back from pigs as her base in some ointments, occassionally she would refer to this as babys fat.

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Guest Landieth
Back in the day, when ?maleficia? (inflicting harm/death, etc.) was strongly associated with witches, one of the forms most strongly associated with this was ointments.

 

These ointments consisted of a base mixed with different roots/flowers/leaves/animal parts/metals/stones, etc.

 

Amongst the list of ingredients that were available and widely used were the following: Water Hemlock, Poplar Leaves, Soot and Belladonna.

 

One ingredient that was directly linked to these ointments was fat from roasted infants.

 

It was said that witches would dig up the bodies of infants from their graves and use them, as well as digging other bodies up as they felt the need.

 

The methods in which these ointments were used were to apply them to the bodies of sleeping victims, and/or applied to objects in which the intended victims would surely handle with their hands.

 

Because the ointments spread diseases, it was also linked to outbreaks of plagues.

 

During 1630, in Milan, an outbreak of a plague was believed to have been the result of witches smearing the walls of the city ointments.

 

Those suspected of doing this was grossly tortured and executed for their acts.

 

 

 

 

***Personal Note***

 

My mother used to use fat back from pigs as her base in some ointments, occassionally she would refer to this as babys fat.

 

You know, I don't doubt for a second that back then baby's fat WAS used. Hey, it was a different time, and believe it or not a lot of things we'd consider taboo (such as blood bonds and inserting hallucinogenic/toxic plants into the wound and then sewn up) was used. In fact, these things are still used, and in some parts of creation I don't doubt the use of fat from a dead baby is still in practice. :)

 

Hmm.. the taboo of this gave me an idea for another thread (thanks bunches Anjel!! :D)

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Guest Varillon

This is disturbing on so many levels, but it could explain why I believe in the purpose of death, especially today. To think, if plagues were still around and effective, there would be no hole in the ozone. Ok, I've offended enough of you :P

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ick, sounds yuccky but yes i can believe that people would have used anything they could get their hands on. I have heard that they used belladonna and other nasties in ointments smeared on broomsticks and then the broomsticks ends were...ahem inserted...and the user then experienced 'flight' I have no idea if this is true or where i first read this but it sounds like it comes from the same general hysteria as the above mentioned ointments

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ick, sounds yuccky but yes i can believe that people would have used anything they could get their hands on. I have heard that they used belladonna and other nasties in ointments smeared on broomsticks and then the broomsticks ends were...ahem inserted...and the user then experienced 'flight' I have no idea if this is true or where i first read this but it sounds like it comes from the same general hysteria as the above mentioned ointments

 

Good point.

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Interesting point. Broomsticks are usually associated with the feminine, aren't they(?), and yet they're one big phallic symbol too.

 

If you believe all the paintings & drawings then yes, broomsticks are associated with the feminine. But if you read some of the accounts of the Burning Times, the male witches were said to have flown, too. (Personally I prefer something not quite so narrow-seated ;))

 

'Sides, wasn't it men who did the judging of (mostly) women during the Burning Times? Perhaps the broomstick-coated-with-ointment-inserted-there might be the only way they could get their jollies?

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Guest Landieth
If you believe all the paintings & drawings then yes, broomsticks are associated with the feminine. But if you read some of the accounts of the Burning Times, the male witches were said to have flown, too. (Personally I prefer something not quite so narrow-seated ;))

 

'Sides, wasn't it men who did the judging of (mostly) women during the Burning Times? Perhaps the broomstick-coated-with-ointment-inserted-there might be the only way they could get their jollies?

 

ROFLMFAO!!

 

Hmm..

 

.. rofl!!

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  • 9 months later...

I will have to agree that this was possible. It was a different time and things were done in different ways. As much as I would like to think that everyone thought along the same lines as we do now I know it's just not true. I can say at least you said the infants were already dead and not killed for their fat, but wait, aren't dead baby's used for stem cell research now? I guess we aren't as different as I thought in some ways, but at least this is for good reasoning.

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I will have to agree that this was possible. It was a different time and things were done in different ways. As much as I would like to think that everyone thought along the same lines as we do now I know it's just not true. I can say at least you said the infants were already dead and not killed for their fat, but wait, aren't dead baby's used for stem cell research now? I guess we aren't as different as I thought in some ways, but at least this is for good reasoning.

 

 

In the U.S. (if I recall correctly) previous president Bush actually vetoed stem cell research (for religious reasons).

 

I'm not going to comment about the current president, as this is not the place to make those remarks.

 

I think Stem Cell research (personally) does need to be researched for their potential.

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 2 months later...

***Personal Note***

 

My mother used to use fat back from pigs as her base in some ointments, occassionally she would refer to this as babys fat.

 

Got to say this has the ring of truth for me.....the Lady's Finger is a vegetable, Spotted Dick is a pudding and Pope's Nose is the rear end of a baked chook; just to pick three examples off the top of my head.

 

And in East Anglia at least, which I have been looking at a bit lately, witches and pigs had a whole lot to do with each other, if one needed an animal source for ointment fat the pig would be the natural choice...I mean the ointments AnjelWolf have been describing seem to operate through natural causes, the only reason I can think of for using human fat would be for magical reasons, adding a "brimstone" factor.

 

Leaving aside cases where the actual purpose of the ointment was already malevolent I can't see that using human fat is in a human sense probable. I think there may be a tendency to exaggerate the degree to which traditional witches were necessarily outlaws in their communities.....I found a very interesting article in this connection, "Women: Witnesses and Witches" ,Clive Holmes Past & Present, No. 140 (Aug., 1993), pp. 45-78 mostly about the early modern witches in Knaresborough and Pendle forests in England; I haven't finished with the article but one of the important points he makes is that people did not by ordinary denounce their witch neighbours; witches could be troublesome but they could also be helpful, overall people preferred to manage the troublesomeness than to denounce witches to the authorities. A major exception to this situation of course was when a witch-finder stirred up a witch-craze.......My point here is one does not take a live-and-let-live attitude to people one thinks are rendering one's babies for ointment fat.

 

Pig's fat I'm guessing.

Edited by froglover
Typos: has -> have, the-> their
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  • 3 years later...

ick, sounds yuccky but yes i can believe that people would have used anything they could get their hands on. I have heard that they used belladonna and other nasties in ointments smeared on broomsticks and then the broomsticks ends were...ahem inserted...and the user then experienced 'flight' I have no idea if this is true or where i first read this but it sounds like it comes from the same general hysteria as the above mentioned ointments

 

If you think about it, its not so far fetched. They didn't have dildos back in the day and the men were gone to war and out in the fields and such. They probably used what was at hand and the ointment...homemade lube. Someone probably got the bright idea to put hallucinogenic substances in it. Wasn't belladonna used as an aphrodisiac back then to make one look more sexually appealing? Bella Donna= beautiful lady. (Plus, I know someone from school who lost their virginity this way, minus the poison ointment, so its not too much of a stretch for my mind. )

 

 

Got to say this has the ring of truth for me.....the Lady's Finger is a vegetable, Spotted Dick is a pudding and Pope's Nose is the rear end of a baked chook; just to pick three examples off the top of my head.

 

And in East Anglia at least, which I have been looking at a bit lately, witches and pigs had a whole lot to do with each other, if one needed an animal source for ointment fat the pig would be the natural choice...I mean the ointments AnjelWolf have been describing seem to operate through natural causes, the only reason I can think of for using human fat would be for magical reasons, adding a "brimstone" factor.

 

Leaving aside cases where the actual purpose of the ointment was already malevolent I can't see that using human fat is in a human sense probable. I think there may be a tendency to exaggerate the degree to which traditional witches were necessarily outlaws in their communities.....I found a very interesting article in this connection, "Women: Witnesses and Witches" ,Clive Holmes Past & Present, No. 140 (Aug., 1993), pp. 45-78 mostly about the early modern witches in Knaresborough and Pendle forests in England; I haven't finished with the article but one of the important points he makes is that people did not by ordinary denounce their witch neighbours; witches could be troublesome but they could also be helpful, overall people preferred to manage the troublesomeness than to denounce witches to the authorities. A major exception to this situation of course was when a witch-finder stirred up a witch-craze.......My point here is one does not take a live-and-let-live attitude to people one thinks are rendering one's babies for ointment fat.

 

Pig's fat I'm guessing.

 

This makes sense to me. I tend to think they used pig's fat too. I grew up being taught to save the bacon grease after cooking in a tightly sealed mason jar. Some people eat it on toast but no one in my home ever ate it.

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I grew up being taught to save the bacon grease after cooking in a tightly sealed mason jar.

 

Yeppers. They even had jars in canister sets marked "grease" along with "flour", "sugar" and the like. I still save the bacon fat in a jar. I do occasionally use it to grease the skillet when I want bacon flavor without the meat but mostly it's so the hot grease doesn't get poured down the drain - it clogs pipes when it solidifies.

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Back in the day, when �maleficia� (inflicting harm/death, etc.) was strongly associated with witches, one of the forms most strongly associated with this was ointments.

 

These ointments consisted of a base mixed with different roots/flowers/leaves/animal parts/metals/stones, etc.

 

Amongst the list of ingredients that were available and widely used were the following: Water Hemlock, Poplar Leaves, Soot and Belladonna.

 

One ingredient that was directly linked to these ointments was fat from roasted infants.

 

It was said that witches would dig up the bodies of infants from their graves and use them, as well as digging other bodies up as they felt the need.

 

The methods in which these ointments were used were to apply them to the bodies of sleeping victims, and/or applied to objects in which the intended victims would surely handle with their hands.

 

Because the ointments spread diseases, it was also linked to outbreaks of plagues.

 

During 1630, in Milan, an outbreak of a plague was believed to have been the result of witches smearing the walls of the city ointments.

 

Those suspected of doing this was grossly tortured and executed for their acts.

 

 

 

 

***Personal Note***

 

My mother used to use fat back from pigs as her base in some ointments, occassionally she would refer to this as babys fat.

 

I would be interested to know if the use of roasted deceased infants was a fact, or more a case of people trying to give witches a horrific name? Nothing says "this group of people is evil!" than saying they roast children. It makes me think of the story of Hansel and Gretel, where the witch cooks children, and I wonder if there is any relation there to this article (or book, or wherever this was sourced from).

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Oh forgot to say - we still now have "baby back ribs" so yes, I could see that "baby's fat" could very easily be bacon or general pork fat. (It won't let me edit my other post to add this random last thought)

Edited by Aurelia
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