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Pristina Medicamenta: Ancient and Medieval Medical Botany

Series: Variorum Collected Studies Series

By: Jerry Stannard

348 pages, no illustrations

Ashgate Publishing Limited

Hardback | Mar 1999 | #153746 | ISBN: 0860787737
Availability: Usually dispatched within 7 days Details
NHBS Price: £80.00 $98/€89 approx

About this book

Jerry Stannard assembled a legendary collection of materials on the history of botany from Homer to Linnaeus, and his mastery of the field was acknowledged as incomparable. However, his work was sadly cut short by his death, and so did not result in the ultimate synthesis he envisioned; the present volume, and its companion, Herbs and Herbalism in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance, bring together his important output in articles and studies. In this selection of papers on pharmacy and medical botany, from the classical period to 1500, Stannard combined philological expertise with the scientific perspective of modern pharmacology to measure the descriptive accuracy and therapeutic efficacy of Materia Medica from Hippocrates to the Renaissance. His sources included not only the obvious technical treatises but also works of literature and the traditions of folklore especially in Italy. Three studies of the scholastic botany of Albertus Magnus form the centrepiece of the collection, and the detailed indexes cover both common and scientific names of plants.


Introduction, John M. Riddle; Bibliography of publications by Jerry Stannard; Ancient World: Hippocratic Pharmacology; Pliny and Roman botany; Medicinal plants and folk remedies in Pliny, Historia naturalis; Lucianic natural history; Materia Medica and philosophic theory in Aretaeus; Marcellus of Bordeaux and the beginnings of medieval Materia Medica; Lost botanical writings of antiquity; Byzantium: Byzantine botanical lexicography; Aspects of Byzantine Materia Medica; Medieval West: Benedictus Crispus, an 8th-century medical poet; Medieval Italian medical botany; Greco-Roman Materia Medica in medieval Germany; Albertus Magnus and medieval herbalism; The botany of St. Albert the Great; Identification of the plants described by Albertus Magnus, De vegetabilibus, lib. VI; Bartholomaeus Anglicus and 13th-century botanical nomenclature; Vegetable gums and resins in medieval recipe literature; A 15th-century botanical glossary (Huntington Library MS HM 64); Index.

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