(From Amuleta 511 a band, because it was tied round the person's neck; or from to defend). Amulets.

Amulets and charms are so nearly allied, as to be con-, sidered in the same light. In each, superstition, the common disease of weak minds, is indulged.

Sometimes words, Amuleta 513 or carmina, were written and carried by the patient on some part of his body, or in some of his garments. These were called amuleta, from amovere, to remove, and proebia, or proebra, from prohibere, to defend. The Greeks call them apo-tropŒ'a, phylacteria, amyteria, alexiteria, and alexipharmaca, because they imagined that these remedies could defend them, not only against such diseases as proceed from natural causes, but also against the power of other enchantments.

These amulets were formed of any materials which fancy suggested.

Serenus Samonicus invented the abracadabra for the cure of the fever called hemitritaea. The Jews attributed the same virtue to the word aracalan. The Arabians were anxious to see if the stars favoured them, and call it talisma, i. e. image.

Amulets tied about patients for the removal of disease were called periapta, and periammata, from Amuleta 514 circum, and necto. Blanchard says that they are medicines which, being tied about the neck, are believed to expel diseases, especially the plague. The royal touch was ridiculously said to cure the king's evil.

Charms seem to have imposed a belief, that those who were exercising them were particularly favoured by some superior being. This gave the world a venerable idea of the practitioner; and as the mind affects the body, the persuasion of the patient might sometimes contribute to a cure.

Yet it has happened that this supposed amulet may have some virtue. We mean not to allude to quills of quicksilver and arsenic worn about the neck, the eel-skin tied about the legs to prevent cramp, or the stones worn against haemorrhages; but the essence vessels hung round the neck, the Amuleta 516 of the

Greeks, if filled with any very volatile aroma, may have been useful in guarding against contagion. Even the camphor, if not too closely confined, may have some effect; and we remember being told by a former recorder of London, that he found it imparted some warmth. The aromatic vinegar and the attar of roses diffuse a very sensible perfume, however closely shut up; and M. Morveau's antipestilential box, which contain ingredients that, on the access of the atmosphere, act on each other, producing a copious exhalation of pure air, though as an external appendage it may rank with amulets, must have a certain and powerful effect.