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Virginia Commonwealth University
HIST 201
James Scow

9/26/12 Medieval Medicine: An introduction The roots of medieval medicine • Today we look at the body as a mechanical system, it was looked at like this until the mid-19 century • Hippocratic corpus (460 – 370 BCE) o The body of writings related to Hypocrisies o The basis for medicine in Greece and eventually in Rome • Galen (129 – 199/217 CE) – Roman o Gives a fully realized system of the body o Engages in experimental science – not just theory for him, but also practice • Ibn Sina (Avicenna) (980-1037 CE) o Adds to everything Galen wrote, and systemizes it again – encyclopedia-like system o This system helps practicing physicians to look something up quickly o Cannon of Medicine was the name of his book. It goes from the Greek tradition of learning to the Arab tradition of learning o Gets planted in western Europe – Salerno, Italy • Salerno (900-1100 CE) o The way of thinking about the body spreads from here • The medieval universities (1100-forward) o
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