The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 2, July 1898 - April, 1899 Page: 60
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60 Texas Historical Association Quarterly.
an added argument in support of the theory that part of the
Jewish captives wandered from Assyria into the New World, where
they were absorbed and lost in the broad and friendly bosom of
their indigenous host.
The Sacred Formulas possess an ethnologic value second to no
other known means of discovering tribal cult -and character, and
they afford measureless aid to the study of native folklore before
it 'was influenced by the white man's presence. The MEDICAL
Formulas are concerned only with the health of the people, and
they are based upon the following allegory: All the animals of the
earth met in council to devise means for the destruction 'of man,
their common enemy. Eadh species possessed the power over some
particular deadly pestilence; these ,distempers they combined and
turned loose upon the devoted race. The suffering and mortality
that followed were so appalling as to excite the pity of the vegeta-
ble world, which, in its turn, called a council. Fa'ch species in this
Kingdom was gifted with the balm that brought healing to some
one of the many ills that afflict mankind, and, in the supreme
moment of his despair, they distilled their life-giving balsams for
the deliverance of man. The Shamans, who lived in close commu-
nion with floral nature, were intrus'ted with her secrets; these
secrets they embodied in formulas which they delivered to the
people that they might hear the glad message; and thus they were
saved. To the credit 'of this tradition, it may be affirmed that their
Shamans were really instructed in the medicinal qualities of many
indigenous plants. Other plants in their Materia Medica were
wholly inert; these they employed as fetiches from some fancied
resemblance to diseased organ's, for the principle of "similia
similibus" was as familiar to their ancestors as to the modern school
of Doctor Hahnemann. Failing memory was treated with beggar-
lice and other burr-bearing plants, that the sticking qualities of the
burrs might be imparted to the memory. Goat's Rue was pre-
scribed for falling out -of the 'hair because the roots of this plant
are tough and difficult to pull up. The Maidenhair Fern was ad-
ministered for rheumatism that the contracted muscles might un-
bend as the fronds of the fern unroll during its healthy growth. But
the MEDICAL Formulas were not restricted to drugs as curative
agents. The bath, especially in la running stream, was a most
trusted resource in the Cherokee therapeutics, and it is curious to
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Texas State Historical Association. The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 2, July 1898 - April, 1899, periodical, 1898/1899; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101011/m1/64/: accessed May 26, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.