Bloated Bloody Bitches: Bleed ‘Em Out

It’s not bad enough that you are bleeding.

You must now be bled as well.

The bloating from your bleeding must be blotted out by being bled.

bleeding-medieval-woman

In medieval attempts to “cure” the swelling which accompanied menstruation, doctors would slice the ankles of bleeding women to “release” built-up “poisonous humours” which they believed caused bloating.

Doctors would then apply “repellant” in the form of cold plasters, to prevent further swelling from occurring.

They also used suppositories to flush out “poisonous menstrual matter.

medieval-suppository

Bleeding and cramping and pooping. Oh, my!

And so you lay, your bloated body immobilized by plaster, your nether-regions dripping and flowing blood and excrement… 

Good times!

In spite of prevailing negative views about menstruation in the Middle Ages, according to author Margaret Schaus in her book “Women and Gender in Medieval Europe,” doctors viewed menstruation as “the sin qua non of female health.

papaya-tree

In the Middle Ages, menstruation was called “the flowers.” It was believed that, like trees which cannot bear fruit without flowers, women could not bear children without first “flowering” in the form of menstruation.

If a woman did not menstruate regularly, “the buildup of excess waste products could cause all manner of disease, from skin conditions to breast cancer…to uterine suffocation, and ultimately death.”

The theory of “humours,” a buildup of bodily wastes, led medieval doctors to the belief that menstruating women needed to be “bled” – a medical practice in which the flesh was cut open to allow “bad blood” to be released from the body.

wmd-explosion

A menopausal medieval woman, therefore, was a deadly biological weapon.

She was, in essence, a walking plague able to poison any man she came into contact with.

For this reason, doctors created remedies “to bring down a woman’s courses” (i.e. induce menstruation).

These included steam-baths, vomit-inducing potions, and hands-on manipulation of the “private privy.”

Hmph.

Pretty sure that last remedy aided in deflation of non-female swellings as well. :roll:

Not surprisingly for medieval male-centric medicine, the most recommended remedy “to bring down a woman’s course” was…

 …let’s say it all together, now…

SEX!

medieval-sex

Would you allow your doctor to ‘bleed‘ your bloating?

Or to manipulate your ‘private privy‘ to induce bleeding?

.

Mwaaa-haa-ha-ha-ha-ha-haaaa!!

The past-y was more nasty than you think!

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Read Sylver’s Medieval Monday Bloody Bitches series!

medieval-man-pulling-away-from-bloody-medieval-woman

Medieval Monday 

4 thoughts on “Bloated Bloody Bitches: Bleed ‘Em Out

  1. Pingback: Bloody Bitches: Soak It Up | Sylver Blaque

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