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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 latrosophişt, was also the author of a work on Fevers, in which he advocated theoretical views proper to himself, though based upon the humoralism of liis predecessors.*
Ahrun, a priest and physician of Alexandria who flourished during the reign of Heraclius, was the first to write on small-pox, and other kindred erụptive 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 wbite 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-pos 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 rinsé 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 Æginetæ 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 bad left of his own collec- :: tions. 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 dis
, In book fifth, he treats of wounds and the bites of venomous animals, of poisons and their antidotes. In book sixth, he describes all the diseases caļling 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 Galên, 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 Şaracens. 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 game 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 bårbarism.; and it is not
wonderful thạt the medical profession should have felt the general influence. Yet, when we consult such writers of this period as have reached
and compare those of the first with those of the second part of it, as Cassius, Celsus, Aretæus, Dioscorides, Ruffus and Cælius Aurelianus, all prior to the time of Galen ; with Oribasius of the fourth century, Aëtius
. and Trallianus of the sixth, and finally, with Paulus Ægineta, the last and among the best of them; we are struck with the general uniformity of their views and modes of 'reasoning, as well as with their course of practice. There is nearly as much originality, if not as much acumen, in proportion to their number, in the one group as in the other. Paulus and Trallianus in this respect, are the ablest offsets against Celsus and Aretæus. Of the later group,
with the two exceptions just mentioned, few ventured much beyond the business of commentators or compilers. . But in this they were not corrupters of the art. With the earlier masters still before them, they have advanced opinions' of their own sufficient to show that if medicine had not been revolutionized by. 'them, it had never been entirely neglected. The principles and practices established in better times were still maintained. The profession of those days, conscious of their own position, were content to reverence what they had neither the skill to equal, nor the temerity to set aside.