Knowledge and Practice in English Medicine, 1550-1680 by Andrew Wear

By Andrew Wear

This can be a significant synthesis of the data and perform of early sleek English drugs, as expressed in vernacular texts set of their social and cultural contexts. The ebook vividly maps out a few valuable components: treatments (and how they have been made credible), notions of ailment, suggestion on preventive medication and on fit residing, and the way and why surgeons labored at the physique. particularly, of the main high-profile ailments of the age--the pox and the plague--are mentioned intimately, and their remedy analyzed.

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50 These were, however, minor obstacles to the ¯ow of free market competition that dominated medicine. the medi™—l m—rketpl—™e Historians have ®tted the different kinds of medical practitioners into a model that they have only recently created: the medical marketplace. It has been a very useful virtual space for placing disparate groups of practitioners together on an equal footing. Quacks and empirics were condemned by the learned physicians and it is the latter's hostile writings that largely survive.

145± 69. On early modern Christianity and medicine, see also the essays in W. J. ), Studies in Church History, vol. XIX, The Church and Healing (Basil Blackwell for the Ecclesiastical History Society, Oxford, 1982); O. P. Grell and A. ), Medicine and the Reformation (Routledge, London, 1993); O. P. Grell and A. ), Religio Medici: Medicine and Religion in Seventeenth-Century England (Scolar Press, Aldershot, 1996); D. Harley, `Medical Metaphors in English Moral Theology, 1560± 1660', Journal of the History of Medicine 48, 1993, 396± 435.

63 However, physicians attacked ministers alongside empirics and charitable gentlewomen for practising medicine. 64 The basis of the physician's attacks was, ironically, religious: Calvin's insistence that everyone should keep to their calling or occupation. In The Anatomy of Melancholy (1621), the de®nitive compendium of views on madness, medicine and society in English and European culture, Robert Burton, who was a clergyman and Oxford academic, countered by arguing that any physician who objected that `no cobbler go beyond his last, and ®nd himself grieved that I have intruded into his profession' should look at the number of physicians who had become clergymen, and at the agreement .

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