Carried in one's pocket, potatoes were widely thought to cure or prevent rheumatism, especially if they had been stolen; as they dry and harden, they supposedly are drawing from the sufferer's body the uric acid (or, according to other informants, the iron) which causes the pain. The idea was common in the 1950s (Radford, Radford, and Hole, 1961: 272), and is probably still to be found. A common cure for *warts was to rub them with a slice of potato, and bury it; as it shrivelled, so would the warts.

A Dictionary of English folklore. . 2014.

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