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his return, was honored by the personal correspondence of the Persian king.
The institutions of Christianity under the authority of Justinian, were still more firmly strengthened than formerly. The ancient schools of philosophy at Athens, were by his imperial edict finally closed, and their property, with that of the other remaining institutions of paganism, appropriated to the building of churches. But the expulsion of the philosophers from their ancient home amid the groves of Academus, cast a cloud upon his name. Exiled for refusing to adopt the Christian faith, Damascius of Syria, Simplicius of Cilicia, Eulalius of Phrygia, Priscianus of Lydia, Diogenes and Hermias of Phenicia, and Isidore of Gaza, forsaking the Academy, turned their faces towards the East. They accepted the hospitality of Chosroes, enjoyed under the protection of this sagacious prince, that freedom from persecution to which they had been strangers in their own land, and in the exercise of their talents became the founders of new schools for the diffusion of Grecian science and civilization beyond the limits of the empire.*
From the reign of Justinian to the downfall of Alexandria, the only writers on medicine worthy of notice, were Theophilus, Stephen of Athens, John of Alexandria, Palladius, Ahrun, and Paulus Ægineta. The first of these, Theophilus, called also Philaretus, was a monk, and officiated as physician at the court of Heraclius, who reigned from A. D. 610 till 641. He was the author of a treatise on the structure of
* Freind, vol. i. p. 133; Sprengel, tome ii. p. 192; Gibbon.
the human body considered in a theological point of view, after the manner of Galen's treatise De Usu Partium; drawing his materials from Ruffus and Galen, with occasional additions of his own, He also left a treatise on the Pulse, and another on the Urine. This latter, though of little originality, may be considered the first of a series of works on the same subject, mostly by the Urinoscopists of the middle ages, who, as may be seen in the Lilium Medicinæ of Bernard Gordon, carried their chicanery to a pitch of absurdity perhaps never equaled by any other class of medical industrialists.
Stephen of Athens, John of Alexandria, and Palladius, were commentators on Hippocrates; and with Ahrun and Paulus Ægineta, were all of the Alexandrian school. Palladius, the Iatrosophist, was also the author of a work on Fevers, in which he advocated theoretical views proper to himself, though based upon the humoralism of his predecessors.*
Ahrun, a priest and physician of Alexandria who flourished during the reign of Heraclius, was the first to write on smallpox, and other kindred eruptive fevers. His thirty books of Pandects are no longer extant, though extracts from them have been preserved by Rhazes and Haly Abbas.
"Pestilential ulcers," says he, speaking of plague, "are hot abscesses which appear at the groin and arm-pit, and prove fatal in four or five days: Those which are black are malignant: the red are sometimes fatal; but when they
Sprengel, tome ii. p. 221-2.
are black or green, the patient hardly ever recovers. And so also, with the measles and smallpox, and other eruptive diseases: those that are black or green are the most malignant; the yellow are also dangerous, but not so much so as those just mentioned; while those that are red or white are the most curable." "The small-pox, boils, and the like," says he, "all arise from blood that is corrupt and adust with yellow bile." Again: "When you know that the small-pox is beginning to break out, do not give the patient cold medicine, which would tend to keep back the pustules in the interior; but let him have sweet fennel and smallage in order to bring them to the surface; and let him rinse his mouth with a decoction of lentils and sumach, in order that none may come out on his mouth and throat, and hurt them."*
Paulus Ægineta was educated at Alexandria, and is supposed to have been a professor in that city, at or about the period of its final subjugation by the Saracens, A. D. 640. His work+ presents an able and orderly summary of Greek medicine from Hippocrates onward. He claims merely to have abridged it from Oribasius, with the view of furnish
* Greenhill's translation of Rhazes on the Small-Pox and Measles, 8vo. London, 1848, pp. 103, 129, 163.
Pauli Egineta Totius Rei Medicæ libri vii., per J. Cornarium, fol. Basil, 1556. A previous version called Opus Divinum, published at the same place, 1532, wants the sixth book. See also, the Artis Medicinæ Principes, collection of Stephanus, 1567, which gives Cornaro's version. Also, the English Translation by F. Adams, 3 vols. 8vo. London, 1844. And the French version of the sixth book, entitled" Chirurgie de Paul d'Egine," par René Briau.
8vo. Paris, 1855.
ing an epitome of medical science less voluminous than the cyclopediac compilations of that writer, and more useful to the physician than the imperfect synopsis which Oribasius had left of his own collections. But in the execution of this task, Paulus exceeds his original intention. He draws from many. sources, and much from his own experience; and in all that relates to surgery, he is more full and circumstantial than any other of the ancient authors, not even excepting Celsus. His work is divided into seven books, In the first, he treats of hygiene and the rules of health, as applied to different ages, seasons, temperaments, and to the use of different articles of diet. In the second, he treats of fevers, excrementitious discharges, critical days, complicating symptoms and appearances. In the third, of local affections, from head to foot. In the fourth, of external maladies limited to no particular part of. the surface, including cutaneous and verminous diseases. In book fifth, he treats of wounds and the bites of venomous animals, of poisons and their anti-. dotes. In book sixth, he describes all the diseases calling for surgical manipulations; and in the last, he treats on the properties of medicines simple as well as compound, and particularly of such as he had mentioned in the former portions of his work; also on the modes of preparing these medicines, and on such articles as may be substituted for one another. Paulus is also said to have written on the diseases peculiar to women; and for his skill in this department, he was sometimes called by the Arabians, Paul the Obstetrician. By the moderns he is chiefly
esteemed for his able exposition of surgical diseases and operations. He had the honor of being almost wholly appropriated by Fabricius ab Aquapendente, one of the ablest surgical writers after the first revival of learning in Italy. Paulus is the first to speak of rhubarb as a cathartic,
The only other writer among the Greeks, after the time of Paulus, and worthy of rank among the ancient classics of the profession, is Actuarius. He flourished at Constantinople long after the fall of Alexandria; and is, therefore, to be reckoned among the luminaries of the middle ages.
Before closing this hurried sketch of the medical writers of antiquity, it is worthy of remark that Galen, whose authority was paramount to all others, from the close of the second to the middle of the
seventeenth century, occupies the middle space in the thousand years which intervened between the founding of the Alexandrian school, and its ultimate overthrow by the Saracens. It has been customary to speak of the deterioration of medical science during the latter half of this period. But the decline must be taken in connection with the retrograde movement of general civilization during the same period, and attributed to the same causes. With the progressive decay of the Roman empire both of the East and West, the different communities of which it was composed were gradually sinking deeper and deeper into barbarism; and it is not