Dialogue on the Threshold

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Sunday, 10 August 2014

The torments of beanismus

11. [...] Nam videmus eos qui vagantes, cantantes, cursitantes, vociferantes, balantes, bacchantes, clamitantes, vorantes, potantes, ingurgitantes, mendicantes, hiantes, boantes, in curta tunica saltantes, nullum angulum intactum relinquunt, hoc malo potissimum detineri, urgeri, torqueri. Sive contra, quia in claustris, carceribus, cellis, ergastulis, angulis, cameris scholasticis, tanquam pistrinis, mille repagulis, compedibus, vincti, catenati, ligati, servati, ob inopiam aëris purioris in hunc affectum prolabuntur, aut prolapsi confirmantur.
12. Somnus et hoc loco aliquid potest. Qui enim ex iis glires agunt, magis divexantur, ut noctu hiantes, ronchantes, sternutantes, furzantes, cachantes, schnarchantes, etc. Hiantibus praesertim magis periculi subest, noctu enim, animalcula, ut cimines, pulices, culices, tineae, vespertiliones os intrantes, irrepantes, permerdantes, et mentem perturbantes, divexantes, subtile serum exiccantes, et mala alia excientes, et dilaniant. Idem quoquo de vigilia esto judicium.

Cariollinus Tevetio Crufenas, Themata Medica, de Beanorum, Archibeanorum, Beanulorum et Cornutorum quorumque affectibus et curatione, Typographi Wolphgangi Blass ins Horn (ca. 1626), included in Nugae Venales, sive Thesaurus Ridendi et Jocandi. Ad Gravissimos Severissimos Viros, Patres Melancholicorum Conscriptos. Editio ultima auctior et correctior. Anno 1689. Prostant apud Neminem; sed tamen Ubique.
11. For, we see those who, roaming around, singing, running back and forth, crying aloud, bleating, revelling, shouting, guzzling, drinking, gorging, begging, gaping, yelling, jumping around in short under-garments, leave no nook untouched are above all held down, burdened, tortured by this illness. Or contrariwise, because they are cloistered, imprisoned, in cells, workhouses, crannies, schoolrooms, as if in pounding mills, behind a thousand bars, in fetters, bound, shackled, tied up, under guard, from a want of fresh air they sink into this malady, or having sunk into it they are reinforced in it. 
12. Sleep too has an effect on the matter. For, those who turn themselves into dormice are ravaged in a greater degree, since at night they gape, snore, sneeze, furzen, fret, schnarchen, etc. Danger lurks for the gapers in particular, for at night small animals such as bugs, fleas, gnats, moths, and bats, entering the mouth, creeping inside, shitting everywhere, and disturbing the mind, ravaging, drying out the saliva, and producing other injuries, wretchedly torture and dilacerate these wretched little asses. Let the same judgement also apply to when they are awake.

trans. Alistair Ian Blyth

Image from Orationes duae, De ritu et modo depositionis beanorum, Strasbourg: Dolhopff, 1680.  
Facsimile: University of Mannheim CAMENA - Lateinische Texte der Frühen Neuzeit, Corpus Automatum Multiplex Electorum Neolatinitatis Auctorum, DFG-project CAMENA, Heidelberg-Mannheim


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