Spectacular Science Specifics
There is a single light of science, and to brighten it anywhere is to brighten it everywhere.
1.A chemical extracted from leeches is used as a painkiller.
2.A common cure for all kinds of illnesses in the past was ‘bleeding' the patient. This could be done by the doctor making a small cut and putting a hot cup over the wound to suck out blood, or by putting blood-sucking leeches on the skin. Using leeches is being reintroduced by some western doctors.
3.A cure for whooping cough used in Yorkshire, England in the 1800s was to drink a bowl of soup with nine frogs hidden in it. You couldn't make it yourself – it only worked if you didn't know about the frogs. (And probably not then, either!)
4.A fear of worms is called scoleciphobia.
5.A man who experimented with feeding a Venus flytrap – a type of flesh-eating plant – with bits of his own flesh found the plant could digest it easily. He used bits of his toes that had rotted and dropped off as a result of athlete's foot.
6.A medieval cure for meningitis involved splitting a pigeon in two and laying the two halves, cut side down, on the patient's head.
7.A medieval cure for stammering was scalding the tongue with a red-hot iron. It didn't work...
8.A person would need to weigh around 650 kilograms (1,433 pounds) to have enough fat to stop a bullet. Although their body would be bullet-proof, they could still be killed by a shot to the head.
9.A Roman cure for epilepsy (having fits) was to bathe in the blood of a gladiator.
10.A small animal such as a mouse can be dropped 1,000 metres (3,280 feet) down a mineshaft and suffer no harm because the fastest speed it can fall it is not enough to crush its body.The larger an animal or object, the shorter the distance it can safely fall.
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