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Montage

Chapter & Verse

Correspondence on not-so-famous lost words

November-December 2018

Jacob Adler asks: “In Nishmat Ḥayyim (“The Breath of Life,” 1651), the Dutch rabbi Menasseh ben Israel writes of strange phenomena that supposedly occur in Asia: people making clothing from stone in China; families in Cochin, India, with right thighs swollen like elephants’; and people in Negapatam and Mylapore who can eat with their eyes, whether cucumbers and watermelons or the innards of enemies. Does anyone know of a source for these ideas?”

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