Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Episode 009: Franz Anton Mesmer

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We don't always get to know the origins of a word but this week's podcast delved into the origins of one word in particular: mesmerize.


Episode art by Alex Smith

Our music today was "Oh Franz, Mesmerize Me!" by Prabjit Virdee




Franz Anton Mesmer was an 18th century faith healer and showman who, at best, hypnotized patients into curative states and, at worst, tricked a lot of people into giving him a lot of money. 

He loved an instrument invented by Benjamin Franklin called a "glass armonica," demonstrated below by a person... dressed like Benjamin Franklin. 


SOURCES: 

Mesmer and the Rise and Fall of Animal Magnetism by Douglas J. Lanska and Joseph T. Lanska