You are viewing a single comment's thread.

view the rest of the comments →

[–] Piscina 0 points 2 points (+2|-0) ago 

This article says that thousands of people across the United States drink blood. Some of these people say the oxygen- and iron-enriched substance gives them energy, and none of the drinkers interviewed have had any ill effects from their behavior.

This gives accounts of people who drink blood. It says:

...human blood was considered a bona-fide medical cure. At the end of the 15th Century... Pope Innocent VIII’s physician allegedly bled three young men to death and fed their blood (still warm) to his dying master, with the hope that it might pass on their youthful vitality.

Later on, it was used to treat epilepsy; the afflicted were encouraged to gather around the gallows and collect the warm blood dripping from recently executed criminals.

The question was not “Should you eat human flesh?” says one historian, but, “What sort of flesh should you eat:

... peaking in the 16th and 17th centuries, many Europeans, including royalty, priests and scientists, routinely ingested remedies containing human bones, blood and fat as medicine for everything from headaches to epilepsy.

Blood was procured as fresh as possible, while it was still thought to contain the vitality of the body.

The blood of the living was considered the most potent. Poor people would gather at executions, paying a small amount for a cup of the still-warm blood of the executed. A 1679 recipe from a Franciscan apothecary describes how to make it into marmalade. More from the same article:

Another reason human remains were considered potent was because they were thought to contain the spirit of the body from which they were taken. “Spirit” was considered a very real part of physiology, linking the body and the soul. In this context, blood was especially powerful. “They thought the blood carried the soul, and did so in the form of vaporous spirits,” says Sugg. The freshest blood was considered the most robust. Sometimes the blood of young men was preferred, sometimes, that of virginal young women. By ingesting corpse materials, one gains the strength of the person consumed. Noble quotes Leonardo da Vinci on the matter: “We preserve our life with the death of others. In a dead thing insensate life remains which, when it is reunited with the stomachs of the living, regains sensitive and intellectual life.”

Romans drank the blood of slain gladiators to absorb the vitality of strong young men. Fifteenth-century philosopher Marsilio Ficino suggested drinking blood from the arm of a young person for similar reasons.