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Juice of life : the symbolic and magic significance of blood

Author: Piero Camporesi
Publisher: New York : Continuum, 1995.
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
From the Middle Ages to the Enlightenment, bodily fluids or "humors"--Whether blood, semen, or phlegm - obsessed the educated and ignorant alike. These "elixirs" were believed to possess magical powers guaranteeing long life, sexual potency, intellectual insight (particularly in women), and even holiness. Piero Camporesi, a specialist in popular culture from the Middle Ages to the Enlightenment, tells this  Read more...
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Genre/Form: Folklore
Additional Physical Format: Online version:
Camporesi, Piero.
Juice of life.
New York : Continuum, 1995
(OCoLC)604530365
Online version:
Camporesi, Piero.
Juice of life.
New York : Continuum, 1995
(OCoLC)609343465
Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Piero Camporesi
ISBN: 0826408338 9780826408334
OCLC Number: 32591006
Description: 139 pages ; 22 cm
Other Titles: Sugo della vita.
Responsibility: Piero Camporesi ; foreword by Umberto Eco ; translated by Robert R. Barr.

Abstract:

From the Middle Ages to the Enlightenment, bodily fluids or "humors"--Whether blood, semen, or phlegm - obsessed the educated and ignorant alike. These "elixirs" were believed to possess magical powers guaranteeing long life, sexual potency, intellectual insight (particularly in women), and even holiness. Piero Camporesi, a specialist in popular culture from the Middle Ages to the Enlightenment, tells this fascinating story with an abundance of examples, still of great relevance to those of us who drink "cordials" for revitalizing the heart, take potions for sexual vigor, and believe that a ruddy complexion is a sign of health. This is also a proto-feminist story, for women's purified body, with its menstrual discharge, endows her with greater intelligence - a paradoxical but revolutionary conclusion in an era of misogyny.

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