new twist to the legand of magnets

Before the times of magnetic bracelets and arthritis,  magnet is a metal object that has the ability to attract iron (and several other metals). There is a rock that has this property in its natural state: it is called magnetite, from the Greek magnesia, which was the name of the town in Asia Minor where it was first discovered.

Aristotle wrote that the virtues (mysterious as they were) of this particular rock were well known in ancient Macedonia, another Greek province where it was also found, thrilling the interest of the scientists, doctors and philosophers of the time.

The Greeks believed quite simply that the secret ability of the rock was due to divine essence (and therefore only understood by the gods). Others, such as Thieles, thought that the magnetic rock was a living thing that fed on iron.

According to legend at the occasion, it was thought that a Greek shepherd called Magnes had accidentally discovered the secret of magnets. One day as he was leading his flock to graze on the Macedonian hills, the iron baton that he was using as a walking stick was drawn to a nearby rock.

He tried to retrieve it from the strange rock and only succeeded after a long struggle. Intrigued by the rock, he broke off some pieces that he carried with him from then on, convinced of its supernatural powers. His life was transformed. He no longer felt exhausted thanks to magnetic therapy.

He was able to sprint vast distances crossways the mountains with his flock, all through the long summer pastures, without feeling tired with the help of magnetic therapy bracelets.

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