By John Cheyne
The legend of thieves is a story with many versions. The question is, can these stories be proven? If there is no actual proof, are there historical accounts from a different source that could lend support to the legend? Can science also offer some facts to whether the story could be true? We believe the answer to these questions is yes.
So what is the Legend of Thieves? The Thieves story revolves around the Bubonic Plague or Black Death. The story we hear most often is usually reported in around the time of the early 1500’s (although the Black Death that killed millions was in the 1300’s). Unfortunately, there have been many plagues with varying degrees of lethality from the year 1300 and until as recently as August of this year. In the most recent case, Madagascar has reported 177 deaths as of November 15th, 2017 in what is being said is the worst outbreak of modern times. In the case of the Four Thieves, during the crisis of the early 1500’s, it was reported that four brothers had been robbing Black Plague victims of their wealth. One report suggested the thieves would break into homes, kill the sick occupants, and then rob them. The reason these men have become somewhat infamous is the fact that they were in contact with very sick people but did not get sick themselves. WHY? This is where the true legend begins. The story states that their parents were basically a version of today’s aromatherapists or naturopaths and their parents taught them the uses and benefits of using essential oils to protect themselves against disease. They applied these oils all over themselves before heading out to plunder the dead. Other reports suggest that these were merchant traders (trading in oils and spices) and that there may have been many of them doing the same thing; unfortunately for these four guys, they got caught. Upon capture, they were sentenced to death but were offered leniency if they gave up their secret formula.
Most recipes that we have seen suggest a blend of four of the following oils: Rosemary, Thyme, Clove, Lemon, Cinnamon and Eucalyptus. Therefore, we have included all 6 in our version of what we call our Thieves Collection. Our 6 bottle collection (six 15ml bottles) allows you to blend multiple bottles as you prefer and at a fraction of the cost of buying a single bottle blend offered by most retailers.
View more about our Thieves Collection here.
There is no way to prove the story of the four thieves, but we do know there are many studies that have shown that the oils in our theme pack have many health benefits. The fact that they are anti-viral, anti-bacterial, anti-microbial, anti-fungal, and a host of other virus-fighting properties suggests that the story of the four thieves is plausible and a version of it may actually be rooted in fact.
Another story that can lend support to the legend comes from the Bible. Thousands of years before the Black Plague ravaged Europe and Asia, there was a plague that ravaged the Israelis after their exodus from Egypt. We pick up the story in Numbers 16:46 where it is stated that a plague was running through the camp of the Israelites. Moses instructs Aaron to take a censer with coals and incense (a blend of oils/spices including Frankincense) and stand between the dead and the living and the plague was stopped. This bible story sounds a lot like an airborne virus was in the air and the burning of the incense was the means to stop it. The Bible goes on to say that over 14,000 died in the plague.