Page:Omniana.djvu/161

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page has been validated.
143
OMNIANA.

outward and sensible sign. This is easily explained; a body which had been embalmed would retain the fragrance of gums and spices when it was dug up to be worshipped, and the saint would have credit for what was done by the embalmer. Dona Luisa de Carvajal procured the quarters of the catholic priests who suffered death in England, anointed them with the strongest spices, and retailed them in presents to her noble friends in Spain[1]: the scent would be perceived by devotees, who would never think of inquiring in what manner the relicks had been prepared. The immediate odour perceived upon the death of saints who certainly never numbered cleanliness among the christian virtues, bears but one explanation;.. no trick is so easy .. and therefore no trick has been so common.

There is an odour of complexion which some saints may, perhaps, have enjoyed, though they cannot have been of the

  1. Southey's Letters from Spain, 3d edit. Vol I.