Cutting was a method of treatment for the plague. It was believed if the bubo was in a mature age and was punctured to release the puss, it would rid the virus. It was a non-safe treatment, if treated too early one could bleed to death.
This was a legitimate form of an antibiotic for the plague, yet ruled non-effective against it, as well as Sulfadiazine.
For the black death, prayer and fasting were believed to be a cure. Other superstitions were strapping live chickens around buboes, drinking potions laced with mercury, arsenic or ground horn from "unicorns." Carrying around sweet-smelling herbs and flowers were believed to purify the air.
Carrying around herbs and flowers created this familiar tune.
Doctors wore leather or heavy cloth in which to protect one's self from infection. Inside the nose piece were herbs believed to purify the inhaled air. Most commonly in cases of the plague, the doctors would use the cutting method to try and cure the patient.