Tuesday, December 16, 2014


Amber and Spice

Anne Wilkinson (1910-1961), "Amber and Spice," from "Notes on Robert Burton's 'The Anatomy of Melancholy'," in The First Five Years: A Selection from The Tamarack Review, ed. Robert Weaver (Toronto: Oxford University Press, 1962), pp. 58-62 (at 58):
If the brain be cool and moist,
Amber and spice, amber and spice.
But should the brain be hot and dry
Amber and spice will your wits away.
A friend suggested to me that Wilkinson's notes could use their own notes. The source of this poem is Burton's Anatomy of Melancholy, Part. II, Sect. IV, Mem. I, Subs. IV:
Amber and Spice will make a hot brain mad, good for cold and moist.

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