Mystical Bedlam

Mystical Bedlam

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Mystical Bedlam explores the social history of insanity of early seventeenth-century England by means of a detailed analysis of the records of Richard Napier, a clergyman and astrological physician, who treated over 2000 mentally disturbed patients between 1597 and 1634. Napier's clients were drawn from every social rank and his therapeutic techniques included all the types of psychological healing practised at the time. His vivid descriptions of his clients' afflictions and complaints illuminate the thoughts and feelings of ordinary people. This book goes beyond simply analysing mental disorder in a seventeenth-century astrological and medical practice. It reveals contemporary attitudes towards family life, describes the appeal of witchcraft and demonology to ordinary villagers, and explains the social and intellectual basis for the eclectic blend of scientific, magical, and religious therapies practised before the English Revolution. Not only is it a contribution to the history of medicine but also a survey of some of the darkest regions of the mental world of the English people of the seventeenth century.property, which was very expensive to replace, for clothes cost ordinary villagers far more time and trouble than they do ... visited the wealthy lunatic Edmund Francklin, he was dismayed to find the gentleman dressed much below his station: aquot;He ... By reducing his apparel to rags, the lunatic repudiated the hierarchical order of his society and declared himself a ... on the roof of his house , spoiled his clothes, and cut off his f1ngers, aquot;saying oftentimes the spirits of the air made him do so.


Title:Mystical Bedlam
Author: Michael MacDonald
Publisher:Cambridge University Press - 1983-06-30
ISBN-13:

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