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Weapʹon Salve

.

A salve said to cure wounds by sympathy. The salve is not applied to the wound, but to the instrument which gave the wound. The direction “Bind the wound and grease the nail” is still common when a wound has been given by a rusty nail. Sir Kenelm Digby says the salve is sympathetic, and quotes several instances to prove that “as the sword is treated the wound inflicted by it feels. Thus, if the instrument is kept wet, the wound will feel cool; if held to the fire, it will feel hot;” etc.

“But she has taʹen the broken lance,

And washed it from the clotted gore,

And salved the splinter oʹer and oʹer.”



⁂ If grease must be used to satisfy the ignorant, it can do no harm on the rusty nail, but would certainly be harmful on the wound itself.

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Entry taken from Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, edited by the Rev. E. Cobham Brewer, LL.D. and revised in 1895.

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Wayland Smith’s Cave
Wayland Wood (near Watton, Norfolk)
Wayleaves
Wayzgoose
We
We Three
We Left Our Country for Our Country’s Good
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Weak-kneed Christian or Politician (A)
Weapon Salve
Wear
Weasel
Weather Breeder (A)
Weather-cock
Weather-eye
Weather-gage
Weather-glass (The Peasant’s)
Web of Life
Wed
Wedding Anniversaries