The #Codex Badiano is an 16th century manuscript describing the medicinal properties of various plants (minerals and other ingredientes) used by the Aztecs. It offers a fascinating view of Pre-hispanic botanical & cosmological knowledge and its contact with European #medieval medicinal practices after the Spanish Conquest.
Also known as the 'Libellus de Medicinalibus Indorum Herbis,' the manuscript was translated by Juan Badiano, from a Nahuatl original (now lost) composed in the Colegio de Santa Cruz de Tlatelolco (the first European school of higher learning in the Americas established by the Franciscans to educate Native American boys for eventual ordination to the Catholic priesthood) in 1552. The Codex was reported to have been sent to the Spain monarch to make a case in favor of the education of the surviving indigenous population in the Americas, particularly members of the nobility.
The Ancient #Mesoamerican had an #holistic approach to medicine. Making use of an empirical yet deep understanding of the properties of plants and minerals, the Aztec shamans used botanicals and other techniques to address the causes and symptoms of diseases while also neutralizing the actions of gods, evil beings & sorcerers.
The Codex includes beautiful illustrations and detailed descriptions of the uses of a vast array of herbs, minerals, and ingredients used in Aztec medicine. Most of the plants and substances mentioned in the manuscript have been identified, and many of their properties and therapeutic uses have been found to be exactly what the Aztec doctors believed them to be. This may be not so surprising when we consider that Moctezuma's palace had beautiful botanical gardens that marveled the Conquistadores at their arrival to Tenochtitlan, and where specialist in the subject cultivated and studied a vast array of plant species to treat all sort of maladies.
The empirical knowledge of herbs in the Pre-hispanic world was indeed astounding, of which only a small portion survived in documents. This knowledge has nonetheless been kept in the traditional medicine of indigenous people and Mexican folklore, not to mention that it has also permeated medical practice and scientific research since the Colonial period.
Take some time to explore the pages of the beautiful Codex Badiano. You can easily find a digital version online!
As a curious note:
The Codex Badianus includes a remedy for the #heartbroken. Since #Aztec doctors associated sorrow with an excess of phlegm, they used plants as the yoloxochitl, cacahuaxochitl and neyoltzayanalizpatli (some identified by modern scholars to have expectorant properties) to cure a💔broken heart.
Here's a modern #recipe to cure a broken heart with the yoloxochitl (Talauma mexicana) flower, adapted from the #Aztec Codex Badiano: Macerate the flower with melissa, rue, orange/lemon &lime peels into artisanal #tequila or #mezcal. Take a spoonful in the mornings until pain recedes. For the desperate cases, Aztec doctors would also recommend rubbing the entire body of the patient with the remedy and then wrapping his or her body tightly with bandages for the night.
Let us know if it works for you! The spoonful of curado de mezcal makes perfect sense, and it has worked for us in the past, with the only difference that we have considerably increased the dosis!!!