Hamilton’s History of Medicine and Surgery

R. Shane Tubbs, PhD
Children’s of Alabama, Birmingham, Alabama, USA

Anand N. Bosmia
University of Alabama, Birmingham, Alabama, USA

Meghan Richli
Department of Anatomical Sciences, St. George’s University, Grenada

Marios Loukas, MD, PhD
Department of Anatomical Sciences, St. George’s University, Grenada

Paul S. Agutter, MD, PhD
Theoretical Medicine and Biology Group, Glossop, Derbyshire, United Kingdom

Mohammadali M. Shoja, MD
University of Alabama, Birmingham, Alabama, US

Series: Distinguished Men and Women of Science, Medicine and the Arts
BISAC: MED039000

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William Hamilton’s History of Medicine, Surgery and Anatomy, penned during the early nineteenth century, is an elegantly written discussion of the development of medicine and surgery from the dawn of humanity to the eighteenth century. The authors have rewritten this chronicle, replacing the British English of the period with modern American English, to suit a contemporary readership and thereby add a valuable resource to the arsenal of medical students, healthcare professionals, and other individuals who wish to study with enthusiasm and intellectual curiosity the history of medicine and surgery. The authors hope that this current work makes an obscure masterpiece readily accessible and comprehensible to the modern reader.

The original 737-page text has been reduced to 161 pages and retitled Hamilton’s History of Medicine and Surgery. Hamilton’s rhetorical flights and repetitions, characteristic of English non-fiction written during the early nineteenth century, have been removed to make the text easier to understand, and some of the more aggressively ethnocentric passages have been removed so as to provide a fairer account of the development of medicine and surgery. The authors have included some of Hamilton’s original footnotes and incorporated additional footnotes in order to balance respect for the original text with the needs and interests of the modern reader. Contemporary publications to which the reader can refer in order to study in greater detail various topics noted in the text are cited in new footnotes. This abridged version delineates significant events pertaining to medicine and surgery prior to the nineteenth century and discusses the lives of historical figures and the paradigms in which they practiced the art of healing in a concise manner. The original text lacks images, and the authors have incorporated 45 images of historical figures to enrich this revised version. Hamilton’s History of Medicine and Surgery richly portrays the odysseys of medicine’s champions and the social and religious milieus in which their efforts to alleviate illness took place, and presents to the reader an opportunity to comprehend more fully the evolution of the art of healing. (Imprint: Nova Biomedical )

Editors’ Preface

Sir William Hamilton’s Original Preface

About the Editors

Chapter 1: History of Medicine from the Creation to the Birth of Hippocrates

Chapter 2: Reformation of Medicine by Hippocrates

Chapter 3: Galen and His Successors

Chapter 4: The Influence of Muslims and Arabs on Medicine after the Capture of Alexandria

Chapter 5: Greek Medical Writers from the Tenth to the Fourteenth Centuries

Chapter 6: The Fetters of Corruption and the Progress of Medical Education

Chapter 7: Medicine from the Tenth to the Sixteenth Centuries

Chapter 8: Medicine and Surgery in the Sixteenth Century

Chapter 9: Anatomy and Physiology in the Sixteenth Century

Chapter 10: Botany, Chemistry, and Pharmacy in the Sixteenth Century

Chapter 11: Medicine and Surgery in the Seventeenth Century

Chapter 12: Anatomy and Physiology in the Seventeenth Century

Chapter 13: Medicine and Surgery in the Eighteenth Century

Chapter 14: Anatomy and Physiology in the Eighteenth Century

Index

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