Re: A Jewish boy in the Czar's Army #general


Judith Romney Wegner
 

The local "healer" [snip] had
him sit next to an anthill and placed the suppurated leg into the middle
of the anthill. The ants ate all the bad flesh and left behind uric acid--
I think it's uric acid--which promoted healing.
Marcia Kamien
Marcia, what a marvellous story about the ants disinfecting your
grandfather's leg!

However, the acid in question is not uric acid, it's formic acid.
"Formis" is latin for ant -- and there's also a famous fable of La
Fontaine about the grasshopper and the ant, called "La cigale et la
fourmi," which we had to learn by heart for French class in high school way
back when -- which is why I know it's formic acid! (Unfortunately nobody
makes schoolkids learn anything by heart nowadays, more's the pity; if
they did, everyone would have a great deal more useful general knowledge
than they do! )

Judith Romney Wegner

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