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Emory Women Writers Resource Project Collections:
Emory Women Writers Resource Project

The Gentlewoman's Companion: or, A Guide to the Female Sex, an electronic edition

by Hannah Woolley [Woolley, Hannah, fl. 1670]

date: 1675
source publisher: Printed by A. Maxwell for Edward Thomas
collection: Early Modern through the 18th Century

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How to order a Woman with Child, before, in, and after her Delivery.

To preserve the Infant, and prevent Abortion, take Coriander-seed prepared two drams, of the roots of Bistort, the shaving of Ivory, & red Coral, of each a dram, of white Amber and Crystal, of each a Scruple; Alkermes half a Scruple, Sugar dissolv'd in four Ounces of Rose-water; make tables each of them weighing a dram. Let the Woman with Child take one of them every other day morning and evening; between whiles let her sup a new-laid- Egg, thickened a little with Magisterium of Pearl, or red Coral. But if her Breasts after their filling should begin to lessen or fall, it is a sign of future Abortion; to prevent which let her take root of Bistort and Corianders, of each two drams; of unripened Galls, and red Sander, and Hippocestidos, of each one dram; Gum-Laudanum and Mastick of each half an ounce; choice Frankincense and Edelium of each two drams; of Coral, Amber, one dram of each powder those which are to be powdered, and with | | 182 Oyl of Turpenitine and Wax, make two or three Cere-cloths, apply them sometimes to her Loines and Sides, and sometimes under the Navel. She must avoid all violent and sudden motions, both of the Mind and Body, as Coughs, Sneezing, Frights, also Spices and Wine. Thus much before Delivery.

In Labour, if you will facilitate the Birth, and give speedy ease, take three or four drops of the distilled Oyl of Nurmegs in a spoonful of White-wine or take white Dictamn-root, stones of Dates, and Borax, of each two Scruples; Cinamon, Cassia-Lignea, Amber, fine Pearl, of each one Scruple, Saffron half a Scruple, make a small powder of these, and divide them into two equal parts, and let her take the one part in a draught of Lilly-water, or Ale-posset made with Rhenish-wine and the other part let her take in like manner six hours after if need require. If she be subject to swooning or fainting before or after Labour, give her a spoonful of this excellent Cordial following.