Physician James Lind had long been credited for discovering a cure for scurvy - the disease caused due to a deficiency of Vitamin C. However, recent claims are that the actual treatment was discovered nearly 50 years before Lind hit on it.
A newly discovered handwritten book has pointed that Ebot Mitchell concocted a remedy in 1707 - some 46 years before Lind realised vitamin C could cure the condition.
AdvertisementAccording to the newly discovered tome, the disease which was the scourge of sailors for centuries could be cured with the help of extracts from various plants mixed with a plentiful supply of orange juice, white wine or beer.
Had the remedy been known earlier in the 18th century, it could have saved thousands of lives, reports The Telegraph.
Lind's later work on the cure and prevention of scurvy was prompted by the round-the-world voyage of Cdr. George Anson in the early 1740s, in which only 145 men out of 1,300 arrived back home, the majority of them dying of scurvy.
Ebot Michell's "Recp.t for the Scurvy" was found in a 100-page household book "Ebot Michell Her Book 1707" discovered in a house in Hasfield, Gloucestershire.
The book is expected to fetch about 600 pounds at Bonhams in London on March 24.
Manuscripts specialist Simon Roberts said: "It's a fascinating read. With the exception of the alcohol, the writer appears to be spot on with her recipe for scurvy."