Remedies for Headaches in A Closet for Ladies and Gentlewomen (1608)

Authors

  • Victoria Domínguez-Rodríguez MA,

    1. From the Department of Modern Philology, University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain (V. Domínguez-Rodríguez); Department of Neurology, Hospital Universitario de Gran Canaria Dr. Negrín, Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain (A. González-Hernández).
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  • Ayoze González-Hernández MD

    1. From the Department of Modern Philology, University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain (V. Domínguez-Rodríguez); Department of Neurology, Hospital Universitario de Gran Canaria Dr. Negrín, Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain (A. González-Hernández).
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  • Conflict of Interest: None.

V. Domínguez-Rodríguez, University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria—Modern Philology, Calle Perez del Toro, s/n, Las Palmas de Gran Canaria 35003, Spain.

Abstract

(Headache 2011;51:632-636)

Seventeenth-century English closets were books containing a wide repertoire of household supplies targeted at female readers. Such volumes typically included medical recipes, as early modern women also used to be responsible for preserving and restoring the health of relatives and close neighbors. A Closet for Ladies and Gentlewomen (Sir Hugh Platt, 1608), in particular, incorporates 13 medicinal remedies devised for the therapeutic management of 3 different types of headaches: head-ache, migraine and pain in the head. This article historically contextualizes the text, offers a valid classification of headaches in 17th-century England, and describes the composition of the homemade pharmaceutical forms recommended to female caregivers, the guidelines for administration and its potential pain-relieving effects.

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