Romeo and Juliet both killed themselves with poison, although it was not
synthetic drugs. The poison had to be as powerful, some scholars believe that it was
hemlock that sealed the fate of the two start crossed love, other are skeptical, but
we will probably never know.
The methods and medicines used in Renaissance and Medieval times were
very primitive compared to today's standards. medical concepts were magical and
demoniacal. With no anesthetics, no knowledge of how the human body and it's
functions people many times would do anything they thought would help, not
necessarily what worked.
They to cure people from "evil" or the devil, people would literally open
up a person's skull and then massage the brain.
Wizards (alchemist) would mix potions, trying to find eternal life , and
cures to everything. For years these alchemists tried to find a way to change lead
into gold, they as you probably know never suceed.
Alchemists as crazy as they may seem to us were in reality the first
chemists discovering metals and mixing them etc.
Here's a poem about something that happen during the Renaissance:
Ring around the rosies,
A pocket full of posies,
We all fall down.
For hundreds of years children sang this song not knowing the horrible
meaning behind it.
Song was written about the Bubonic Plague. Horrible living conditions in
the cities and town helped the "Black Plague" spread killing thousands and greatly
lowered the population of the world. It would cause glands to swell and caused a
horrible oder in it's victims.
There was not really a sanitation system in Elizabethan England garbage
was left in the street for days, rats would then get into the garbage and the rats
would then spread the plague rapidly and in one great wave swept across the
country side. No one was safe, but important religious officials like the arch bishop
of France were surrounding in fire for months.
Back to the meaning of the poem: The rosies refer to rosary beads to gain
divine help. The people with the plague emitted a putrid odor, so flowers were
carried to hide the smell. Ashes resulted from burning the corpses. Fall down
referred to dying people.
The theater was often thought of as a breeding ground for disease so when
the "Black Death" came in the a town the theater would be shut down for long
peroids of time.
Many inventoins were made to help the world's medical feild.
Source: Essay UK - http://www.essay.uk.com/coursework/medicine-during-shakespeare.php