XX 8
THE HOUSE OF PERNOD AND SONS
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medical activity. We cannot resist the urge to reproduce the
portrait drawn of him by a Swiss writer.
He was, apparently, an eccentric, of great height, riding
through the Val de Travers on a small Corsican horse
known in region as the Rocket. His unusual appearance
did not fail to surprise the village populations; it gave rise to
many jokes and persistent astonishment among the
children. Ordinaire did not appear to be concerned with
this; the gravity of his character was not affected. He was a
doctor not without talents for his time, and he did a good
job of bringing the medical art to the Val de Travers. He
joined the practice of medicine to that of pharmacology; the
majority of doctors of the countryside did no differently. Mr.
Ordinaire did not scorn the panaceas, he employed one in
particular, the elixir of wormwood, composed of aromatic
plants of which only he knew the secret. Many people,
having made use of it, declared themselves radically cured
and the doctor could not pretend tobe other than pleased
and to prescribe its use.
Dr. Ordinaire would have been well astonished if anyone
had predicted the high destinies to which his elixir would
be called. At his death the mysterious recipe passed into
the hands of the young Henriod ladies of Couvet.
Cultivating the necessary herbs themselves in their
garden, they distilled them in the family home. The
production of the elixir at the time amounted only to a few
pots which were sold with some difficulty by hawking.
xxxx Little by little, however, thanks to its fragrance and
pleasant taste, the elixir came to the attention of not only
the sick,

(Translated by "Artemis" for your pleasure.)




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