The Crooked Made Straight….(Not about reforming David Cameron, sorry….)

Only tangentially related, but too fun not to post:

From:  A Sure Guide, or, The Best and Nearest Way to Physick and Chirurgery, by Jean Riolan, “Englished” by Nicholas. Culpeper.

“A mis-shapen Chest by reason of the Crookedness of the Back-bone is more frequently seen in Women than in Men, because they are the weaker Vessels. These Crookednesses we endeavour to correct with a firm Pair of Bodies, made either of hard Leather, or of strong Linnen with Whale-bones sowed between, or of very thin Plates of Iron.”

Bodies cf. ‘stays’. The earliest reference in the OED as ‘stays’ is 1608.

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