Sexy Yellow Box (Collection of Jeffrey Sommer)
Interior lid of Sexy Blue Box
Sexy Blue Box #2
Virginís Blood of Uqbar
This product first reached European shores with the expeditions of Marco Polo in the late thirteenth century. The ladies of Venice were immediately taken with it and the demand was high. There were bold claims as to its properties. It was said that a small amount mixed with olive oil would remove blemishes and impart a rosy glow to the skin, a drop added to wine would lead to inner purification even implying that sins might be expunged. This claim caused some concern to the archbishop Lorenzo Di Parma who nonetheless made sure he had a personal supply. It was also said that the substance could serve as a fixative in alchemical formulations allowing preparations of remarkable purity to be obtained. A drop in each eye was sworn by some to grant apocalyptic visions. Some even avowed that it was the sovereign elixir of youth itself. It was agreed by all that this was the most powerful of unguents, restoratives and panaceas.
By the time a second shipment arrived the price of a small bottle had outstripped gold by weight, indeed the going rate was three times its weight in gold inclusive of the bottle itself and Venetians as well as foreigners who had become aware of it were happy to obtain it at any price. Several persons made a good business reselling it by the drop or dram to those who could never afford a full bottle.
The source of the product was distant Uqbar located in a nigh impassible mountain region of Asia. The Uqbari people were farmers, herders and tradesmen, but were also well known for their philosophers, alchemists and mystics. Indeed, they had in those times made excellent trade in various formulations, decoctions and extracts produced by their many medical and chemical savants.
Virginís Blood was exactly that. It was determined to be human blood that had been treated or magicked in some fashion to prevent it from clotting and had herbal additives in small amounts. It was obtained in a non-harmful manner from maidens who had experienced their first blood, but still resided beneath their fatherís roof, were innocent of the company of men and were otherwise pure in every way. One of the local physicians would pay the father of such a girl either two goats or sixteen bushels of barley or 4 silver ďqofsĒ to draw one hundred and twenty-eight drams of blood, enough to make six small bottles of the preparation. The blood had to be drawn in such a manner that it caused no pain whatsoever to the maiden and each girl could only be bled a single time by Uqbari law, thus no father, unless he had a great many daughters, would ever gain substantial wealth through this avenue.
Until the earliest years of the twentieth century this product reached western markets in decreasing amounts as fewer of the Uqbari people chose to live their peopleís traditional lifestyle. In the early nineteen twenties, the land that was once Uqbar became part of the Soviet Union and her people became workers under the new regime dispersed into the great mass of the country. The language, history and customs of this tiny nation all disappeared within a few short years. There are very few people alive in the twenty-first century for whom both parents are Uqbari or know anything of ŎlŻqb„r, their national language.
Bottles of Virginís Blood do turn up from time to time. Empty flasks with a tiny bit of residue are the most common and those are still considered quite desirable to collectors. Much more rarely a bottle that has part of the contents remaining, usually long crystalized, is discovered. Thus it was considered an important occasion that a sealed full flask turned up at auction in twenty thirteen and sold for a price that would be considered unconscionable to anyone with an ounce of sanity. That is the bottle you see before you.
We cannot in good conscience endorse any of the rumored effects associated with this substance and in fact must inform that consuming it in any way will have unknown consequences.
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