It is said that saliva in the East represents a man's essential nature or being. To use one's spittle in healing suggested profound sympathy. Lightfoot has much to say on the use of the spittle in medicine.—H. St. John
Ellicott remarks that 'we know from the pages of Pliny and Tacitus, and Suetonius, that the "saliva jejuna" was held to be a remedy in cases of blindness, and that the same remedy was used by the Jews is established by the writings of the Rabbis.'
(Mark 7. 33; 8. 23; John 9. 6)