Ribbit!

May 23, 2009

For Marty:

Felix Platerus (observat. lib. 1) hath a most memorable example of a countreyman of his, that by chance falling into a pit where frogs and frogs spawn was, and a little of that water swallowed, began to suspect that he had likewise swallowed frogs spawn ; and, with that conceit and fear, his phantasie wrought so far, that he verily thought he had young live frogs in his belly, qui vivebant ex alimento suo, that lived by his nourishment, and was so certainly perswaded of it, that, for many years following, he could not be rectified in his conceit ; he studied physick seven years together, to cure himself, travelled into Italy, France, and Germany, to conferr with the best physicians about it, and, anno 1609, asked his counsel amongst the rest. He told him it was wind, his conceipt, &c. but mordicus contradicere, et ore et scriptis probare nitebatur: no saying would serve : it was no wind, but real frogs – and do you not hear them croak ? Platerus would have deceived him, by putting live frogs into his excrements: but he, being a physician himself, would not be deceived, vir prudens alias, et doctus a wise and learned man otherwise, a doctor of physick ; and after seven years dotage in this kind, a phantasia liberatiis est, he was cured. (Robert Burton, Anatomy of Melancholy, I.3.2.3)

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One Response to “Ribbit!”

  1. Marty Foord Says:

    Dear Richard, thanks so much for the tribute pertaining to this story–I’m overwhelmed. (Burp). Marty.


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