Balder the Beautiful, Volume I. eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 473 pages of information about Balder the Beautiful, Volume I..
of the Canadian Institute, iv. (1892-93) p. 182.  The Thompson Indians of British Columbia thought that the Dawn of Day could and would cure hernia if only an adolescent girl prayed to it to do so.  Just before daybreak the girl would put some charcoal in her mouth, chew it fine, and spit it out four times on the diseased place.  Then she prayed:  “O Day-dawn! thy child relies on me to obtain healing from thee, who art mystery.  Remove thou the swelling of thy child.  Pity thou him, Day-Dawn!” See James Teit, The Thompson Indians of British Columbia, pp. 345 sq. (The Jesup North Pacific Expedition, Memoir of the American Museum of Natural History, New York, April, 1900).  To cure the painful and dangerous wound inflicted by a ray-fish, the Indians of the Gran Chaco smoke the wounded limb and then cause a woman in her courses to sit astride of it.  See G. Pelleschi, Eight Months on the Gran Chaco of the Argentine Republic (London, 1886), p. 106.  An ancient Hindoo method of securing prosperity was to swallow a portion of the menstruous fluid.  See W. Caland, Altindisches Zauberritual (Amsterdam, 1900), pp. 57 sq. To preserve a new cow from the evil eye Scottish Highlanders used to sprinkle menstruous blood on the animal; and at certain seasons of the year, especially at Beltane (the first of May) and Lammas (the first of August) it was their custom to sprinkle the same potent liquid on the doorposts and houses all round to guard them from harm.  The fluid was applied by means of a wisp of straw, and the person who discharged this salutary office went round the house in the direction of the sun.  See J.G.  Campbell, Superstitions of the Highlands and Islands of Scotland (Glasgow, 1900), p. 248.  These are examples of the beneficent application of the menstruous energy.

[249] Taboo and the Perils of the Soul, pp. 1 sqq.

[250] For a similar reason, perhaps, ancient Hindoo ritual prescribed that when the hair of a child’s head was shorn in the third year, the clippings should be buried in a cow-stable, or near an udumbara tree, or in a clump of darbha grass, with the words, “Where Pushan, Brihaspati, Savitri, Soma, Agni dwell, they have in many ways searched where they should deposit it, between heaven and earth, the waters and heaven.”  See The Grihya-Sutras, translated by H. Oldenberg, Part ii.  (Oxford, 1892) p. 218 (Sacred Books of the East, vol. xxx.).

[251] Petronius, Sat. 48; Pausanias, x. 12:  8; Justin Martyr, Cohort ad Graecos, 37, p. 34 c (ed. 1742).  According to another account, the remains of the Sibyl were enclosed in an iron cage which hung from a pillar in an ancient temple of Hercules at Argyrus (Ampelius, Liber Memorialis, viii. 16).

[252] A. Kuhn und W. Schwartz, Nord-deutsche Sagen, Maerchen und Gebraeuche (Leipsic, 1848), p. 70, No. 72. i.  This and the following German parallels to the story of the Sibyl’s wish were first indicated by Dr. M.R.  James (Classical Review, vi. (1892) p. 74).  I have already given the stories at length in a note on Pausanias, x. 12. 8 (vol. v. pp. 292 sq.).

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