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1.
Ambix ; 71(1): 10-34, 2024 Feb.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-38450488

RESUMO

Ancient Greek colour terminology captures brightness, light, and brilliance rather than clear-cut portions of the chromatic spectrum, as scholars agree today. This also applies to the rich semantic of yellow, which we investigate starting from a philosophical and theoretical perspective. We then shift our focus to Graeco-Roman technical writings dealing with alchemical dyes, cosmetics, and other crafts that made use of the same set of ingredients and colouring substances. We compile a complete list of yellow-dyeing plants used in antiquity, which will update and enlarge the lists currently available in secondary literature on the topic, such as the seminal catalogue by Robert J. Forbes. Drawing on these data and on laboratory reconstructions, we address two main questions. First, which shades of yellow were usually associated with the colour of gold, and how were these tints produced by ancient craftsmen and alchemists? And second, how did these procedures contribute to the ancient discourse on the colour of gold and its artificial reproduction?


Assuntos
Alquimia , Procedimentos de Cirurgia Plástica , Corantes , Mundo Grego , Mundo Romano
2.
J Alzheimers Dis ; 97(4): 1581-1588, 2024.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-38277296

RESUMO

Background: The possibility that Alzheimer's disease and related dementias (ADRD) is a modern disease arises from the minimal mention of advanced cognitive decline by ancient Greeks and Romans, who were mainly concerned with the physical frailties of older ages. Objective: Because standard medical histories of elderly health lacked mention of cognitive decline, we examined texts by Greek and Roman authors that mentioned memory loss and dementia. Methods: Primary texts of Greco-Roman authors, 8th century BCE into the 3rd century CE, that mentioned cognitive decline were identified and critically evaluated. Secondary sources were excluded. Results: No ancient account of cognitive loss is equivalent to modern clinical data. The term dementia was occasionally used in antiquity, but not invariably linked to old age. Ancient Greeks and Romans expected intellectual competence beyond age 60. While some memory loss was acknowledged, we found only four accounts of severe cognitive loss that might represent ADRD. The possibility of modest ADRD prevalence in ancient Greece and Rome is consistent with its low prevalence in the Tsimane of Bolivia. These contemporary Amerindians live under conditions of high mortality from frequent infections and minimal cardiovascular disease with physically demanding lives. Tsimane after age 60 had increased mild cognitive impairment; the few cases of dementia were not clinically consistent with AD. Conclusions: The modern 'epidemic level' of advanced dementias was not described among ancient Greco-Roman elderly. The possible emergence of advanced ADRD in the Roman era may be associated with environmental factors of air pollution and increased exposure to lead. Further historical analysis may formulate critical hypotheses about the modernity of high ADRD prevalence.


Assuntos
Doença de Alzheimer , Mundo Grego , Transtornos da Memória , Mundo Romano , Idoso , Humanos , Doença de Alzheimer/epidemiologia , Mundo Grego/história , Transtornos da Memória/epidemiologia , Mundo Romano/história
3.
J Ethnobiol Ethnomed ; 20(1): 11, 2024 Jan 20.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-38245738

RESUMO

The Homeric plant moly is a mysterious herb mentioned in Book 10 of the Odyssey. In the early 1980s, a pharmacological thesis to identify the plant was put forward for the first time, regarding the snowdrop (Galanthus nivalis L.) as candidate species. The proposal was inspired by the snowdrop's acetylcholinesterase (AChE)-inhibiting properties and its alleged morphological reminiscence to other plants called moly by ancient Greek herbalists. Here, we draw from a compilation of literature from various disciplines, together with an understanding of the Homeric epic as a repository of information based on oral traditions, to (i) show that the assimilation of Homer's moly to Galanthus nivalis is, at the very least, questionable and (ii) frame and support a new synthesis of the pharmacological thesis. We suggest that the uncertainty that revolves around the identity of Homer's moly can be tied to an unnamed phylogenetic clade of closely related Mediterranean native species with AChE-inhibiting properties. Further, we speculate that Homer's moly might represent an early record of an ethnobotanical complex, a sort of cultural taxon resulting from the cognitive crossbreeding of closely related taxonomic species that could have been interchangeably used due to their rough resemblance and common AChE-inhibiting properties. Such cultural taxon would have referred to the phytonym moly by the centuries-old oral traditions that ultimately crystallized in the poem. We also venture that sea daffodils (Pancratium spp.) could have greatly contributed to shaping the botanical archetype in the myth as we know it today.


Assuntos
Acetilcolinesterase , Medicina na Literatura , Filogenia , Mundo Grego , Etnobotânica
4.
Int J Cardiol ; 372: 110-112, 2023 02 01.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-36503672

RESUMO

The Iliad, by the Greek poet Homer, is a precious mine of examples of war traumatology. In the specific case of spear wounds in the chest, the death of the Trojan warrior Alcathous is particularly interesting from the point of view of the history of medicine and the evolution of cardiology and knowledge of the heart at the time of ancient Greece. In particular this paper aims to evidence and reconstruct the main anatomical and physiological knowledge of the heart at that time. Indeed, a historical-linguistic analysis of the Greek text prompts some reflections and thoughts on the heartbeat in pathological conditions and on the function of the heart as a hematopoietic organ. Furthermore, Homer's account is a critical text that highlights the relevance of the use of the senses in the ancient description of nosological pictures and it allows us an interesting and suggestive approach to reconstruction from the historical and historiographical point of view.


Assuntos
Medicina na Literatura , Humanos , História Antiga , Grécia , Frequência Cardíaca , Mundo Grego , Guerra , Grécia Antiga
5.
Childs Nerv Syst ; 39(12): 3333-3335, 2023 Dec.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-36370171

RESUMO

This brief report is intended to call attention to the fact that we use some very old terms in our daily medical speaking that were in use about 3500 years ago and were probably uttered as early as the late Bronze Age by Achilles, Agamennon and the other Homeric heroes outside the walls of Troy.


Assuntos
Mundo Grego , Humanos , Grécia
6.
Wiad Lek ; 75(8 pt 1): 1900-1902, 2022.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-36089876

RESUMO

OBJECTIVE: The aim: This paper explores the documentation of the effect of quartan fever on, the ancient Greek equivalent of conditions falling nowadays under the spectrum of depression, in Greco-Roman medical sources. PATIENTS AND METHODS: Materials and methods: The authors searched original medical texts written in Greek by physicians who lived and practiced Medicine in the broader Mediterranean region from the 5th century BC to the 7th century AD for records related to quartan fever and neuropsychiatric diseases. CONCLUSION: Conclusions: Quartan fever was used as a treatment for neuropsychiatric conditions until the middle of the 20th century. Although malaria can have severe neuropsychiatric sequelae, the neuroimmunological underpinnings of the effect of fever and heat on depression warrant further investigation.


Assuntos
Malária , Mundo Romano , Depressão , Febre/tratamento farmacológico , Mundo Grego/história , Humanos , Mundo Romano/história
8.
Cas Lek Cesk ; 160(2-3): 97-101, 2021.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34134499

RESUMO

The aim of this study is to prove that at the beginning of the 1st millennium BC at the latest an independent gynaecological tradition was formed within the Greek art of healing, from which the later Classical Graeco-Roman medicine drew inspiration. In this paper, the archaeological (especially the terracotta figurines and models and scenes painted on vases) and literary (the economic records and poetry excerpts) sources for the development of gynaecology from the advanced phases of the 2nd millennium until 500 BC are presented. The preserved sources clearly indicate that the Greek medicine reached some positive achievements already before 500 BC. Already in that period it put emphasis on the gynaecological issues. The described sources well illustrate also the development of the religious and mythological ideas related to the gynaecological, or the gynaecological-obstetrical aspect of healing, represented by Eileithyia, the goddess of childbirth, which was worshiped in the Greek world already since the Bronze Age. The Ancient Greek medicine has got the important place in the history of the European and world medical science. In the frame of medicine of the period in question, it is possible to trace back to the beginning of the 1st millennium BC the specific healing-gynaecological tradition, with an emphasis on the obstetrics. In this tradition, a combination of rational, empirical and religious aspects was used. The terracotta models from the 9th-8th centuries BC point on the widely used practice of midwifery, too. Unfortunately, it is not possible to clearly discern if the midwifes existed already before 500 BC as a specific and independent medical occupation.


Assuntos
Ginecologia , Grécia , Mundo Grego , História Antiga , Humanos
9.
Arch. esp. urol. (Ed. impr.) ; 74(2): 239-346, mar. 2021. ilus
Artigo em Inglês | IBECS | ID: ibc-202664

RESUMO

OBJECTIVES: The people of ancient age appealed to sanctuaries of different gods and goddesses they believed to have healing powers and consecrated anatomical votive offerings representing their sick or healed organs. Male genital organ votives were also present among these votives. In this article, male genital organ votive offerings presented to gods and goddesses were examined and the votives giving information about the diseases they indicated were revealed in contemporary medicine. METHODS: Information available in written resources on ancient medicine and diseases was reviewed. Main sanctuary healing centers in Anatolia (Asia Minor), Greece and Italy which concurrently hosted similar civilizations were investigated. Male genital organ shaped anatomical votive samples in national and foreign medical history and archaeology museums, galleries and special collections were investigated and examined. RESULTS: It was observed that most male genital organ votives had a healthy and normal structure and didn’t provide any specific information on a urogenital disease. But it was also observed that some votives among genital organ votives consecrated by sick individuals to gods demonstrated some urogenital diseases and conditions. Among this very limited number of genital votives providing disease information, votives indicating phimosis, hypospadias, varicocele, penile hemangioma or condylama, Peyronie’s disease or penile curvature, genital hidradenitis suppurativa, condition of pubic hair and erectile condition of penis were detected. CONCLUSIONS: As proofs of seeking a remedy for diseases or recovering from diseases, anatomical organ votives are very important to understand ancient sanctuary medicine. Among male genital organ votives, very limited number of samples providing specific information on diseases provided us important information so that we can understand some ancient age diseases


OBJETIVOS: Los habitantes de la era antigua acudían a santuarios de distintos dioses con la creencia de que éstos tenían poderes curativos y les entregaban ofrendas votivas de partes anatómicas enfermas, bien para que fueran sanados o como ofrenda una vez sanados. Entre estas ofrendas votivas encontramos órganos reproductores masculinos. En este artículo se han revisado y examinado estas ofrendas votivas de órganos reproductores masculinos y de ello se ha podido obtener información sobre enfermedades que existen en la medicina contemporánea. MÉTODOS: La información presente en escritos de medicina ancestral y enfermedades se revisó. Los principales santuarios de sanación en Anatolia (Asia Menor), Grecia e Italia que de forma concurrente tuvieron diferentes civilizaciones, fueron investigadas. La forma del órgano genital masculino en muestras votivas de historia de la medicina nacional y extranjera, museos arqueológicos, galerías y colecciones especiales, fueron investigadas y examinadas. RESULTADOS: Se observa que la mayoría de votivos de órganos genitales masculinos tenían una forma natural y sana y no proporcionaban ninguna información especial respecto a enfermedades urogenitales. Aunque también se observó que algunos votivos de individuos enfermos a dioses si presentaban algunas enfermedades urogenitales y condiciones especiales. Entre los votivos enfermos, encontramos votivos con fimosis, hipospadias, varicocele, hemangioma peneanos y condilomas, enfermedad de Peyronie o curvatura peneana, hidradenitis genital supurativa, desarrollo de pelo púbico y condiciones eréctiles del pene. CONCLUSIONES: Como prueba del interés por encontrar un remedio a las enfermedades o recuperarse de enfermedades, los votivos de órganos anatómicos fueron muy importantes para entender la medicina antigua. Entre todas estas ofrendas votivas de órganos genitales, a pesar de que un número muy limitado de ellas nos ha proporcionado información concreta sobre enfermedades, la información obtenida en ellas ha sido crucial para entender algunas de las enfermedades de la edad antigua


Assuntos
Humanos , Masculino , História Antiga , Doenças Urogenitais Masculinas/história , Pênis , Religião e Medicina , Comportamento Ritualístico , Museus , Mundo Romano/história , Mundo Grego/história , Arqueologia
10.
Acta Med Hist Adriat ; 18(2): 201-228, 2021 01 20.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33535760

RESUMO

Even though the absence of the body prevents sure conclusions, the death of Alexander the Great remains a hot topic of retrospective diagnosis. Due to the serious mishandling of ancient sources, the scientific literature had Alexander dying of every possible natural cause. In previous works, the hypothesis that typhoid fever killed Alexander was proposed, based on the presence of the remittent fever typical of this disease in the narrations of Plutarch and Arrian. Here we provide additional evidence for the presence of stupor, the second distinctive symptom of typhoid fever. In fact, based on the authority of Caelius Aurelianus and Galen, we demonstrate that the word ἄφωνος, used to describe the last moments of Alexander, is a technical word of the lexicon of the pathology of Hippocrates. Used by him, the word defines a group of diseases sharing a serious depression of consciousness and motility. The association of stupor with the remittent fever strengthens the typhoid fever hypothesis.


Assuntos
Afonia/história , Mundo Grego/história , Estupor/história , Febre Tifoide/história , Pessoas Famosas , História Antiga , Malária/classificação , Malária/história
12.
Acta Med Hist Adriat ; 18(1): 115-128, 2020 06 29.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-32638603

RESUMO

During the Byzantine Times, medicine and surgery developed as Greek physicians continued to practice in Constantinople. Healing methods were common for both adults and children, and pediatrics as a medical specialty did not exist. Already Byzantine hospitals became institutions to dispense medical services, rather than shelters for the homeless, which included doctors and nurses for those who suffered from the disease. A major improvement in the status of hospitals as medical centers took place in this period, and physicians were called archiatroi. Several sources prove that archiatroi were still functioning in the late sixth century and long afterward, but now as xenon doctors. Patients were averse to surgery due to the incidence of complications. The hagiographical literature repeated allusions to doctors. Concerns about children with a surgical disease often led parents to seek miraculous healings achieved by Christian Protectors - Saints. This paper is focused on three eminent Byzantine physicians and surgeons, Oribasius, Aetius of Amida, Paul of Aegina, who dealt with pediatric operations and influenced the European Medicine for centuries to come. We studied historical and theological sources in order to present a comprehensive picture of the curative techniques used for pediatric surgical diseases during the Byzantine Times.


Assuntos
Pediatria/história , Especialidades Cirúrgicas/história , Bizâncio , Mundo Grego/história , História Antiga , História Medieval , Humanos
13.
Nurs Philos ; 21(4): e12313, 2020 Oct.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-32705753

RESUMO

The current situation in which the humanities are disparaged affects all university disciplines, including nursing, in whose historical evolution the humanities have always been present in one form or another. Looking beyond this disrepute, this study proposes that nursing renew its attention to classical philosophy. Specifically, it invites a close reading of Xenophon's Anabasis and Plato's Meno, to get three related goals: to show how the use of ancient texts are very valuable tools for the philosophical initiation of nursing students and can help them reflect on their choice of nursing as a practical activity; to reflect on the problem of virtue and the nature of the good life; and to show how the interaction with ancient texts allows students to reflect on questions and issues of life, theirs and others, that are not open to investigation through a purely scientific method. Consequently, both Anabasis and Meno readings strengthen the intellectual relationship between philosophy and nursing, enabling the latter to delve deeper into the key questions of its own thought as a discipline.


Assuntos
Mundo Grego , Filosofia/história , Estudantes de Enfermagem/psicologia , História Antiga , Humanos , Estudantes de Enfermagem/estatística & dados numéricos
14.
BMC Pulm Med ; 20(1): 165, 2020 Jun 10.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-32522288

RESUMO

BACKGROUND: The collected works of Hippocrates were searched for concepts on the diagnosis, prognosis, and treatment of acute and urgent respiratory diseases, with the objective to trace their origins in the Hippocratic Collection. METHODS: A scoping review was performed to map out key concepts of acute and severe respiratory diseases in the entire Hippocratic Collection. The digital library Thesaurus Lingua Graeca (TLG) was researched for references in the entire Hippocratic Collection regarding the epidemiology, pathophysiology, prognosis, diagnosis and treatment of acute respiratory diseases; then, the relevant texts were studied in their English translation by the Loeb Classical Library. RESULTS: Hippocratic physicians followed principles of treatment for pneumonia and pleurisy, still relevant, such as hydration, expectoration, analgesia and prompt mobilisation. Other approaches, including the inhalation of "vapours through tubes" in angina, can be considered as forerunners of modern medical practice. Thoracic empyema was diagnosed by shaking the patient and direct chest auscultation after "applying your ear to his sides". In case of an emergency from upper airway obstruction, urgent insertion of primitive airway equipment, such as a small pharyngeal tube, was applied. CONCLUSIONS: The main Hippocratic concepts on four still common acute and urgent respiratory diseases -pneumonia, pleurisy, thoracic empyema and upper airway obstruction- were identified and most of them were found to be in agreement with contemporary medical thinking and practice.


Assuntos
Doença Aguda/terapia , Emergências/história , Mundo Grego/história , Médicos/história , Obstrução das Vias Respiratórias/história , Diagnóstico , Empiema Pleural/história , Grécia Antiga , História Antiga , Humanos , Pleurisia/história , Pneumonia/história , Prognóstico
15.
Forensic Sci Med Pathol ; 16(2): 207-215, 2020 06.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-32410108

RESUMO

In an examination of three unwrapped mummified children from the Graeco-Roman Period of ancient Egypt there was an unexpected finding of fair hair. In the majority of unwrapped ancient Egyptian mummified bodies the hair was not fair but rather dark brown or black. To determine if exposure to natron during the mummification process was responsible for the fair hair color an experiment was carried out to partially replicate the environment in which bodies were desiccated. Fourteen samples of modern hair from various age groups, sex and ethnicity were subjected to synthetic natron for a period of 40 days to replicate the time taken to mummify a body. Macroscopic and microscopic examinations of samples were employed to ascertain any significant changes in hair color after treatment. Ancient wigs were studied for evidence of post mortem changes to hair color since construction over 2,000 years ago. Results of the study showed no significant lightening of hair color and in several samples the hair significantly darkened as the result of exposure to the natron. There was not any evidence that hair lightened as the result of natural post mortem changes and this was confirmed by the study of the natural hair wigs that had not changed color post mortem. This study concluded that the fair hair observed in the three child mummies was not the result of exposure to natron or post mortem changes but rather it was probably due to ancestry because of the presence of diverse genomes that were introduced into ancient Egypt during the Greco-Roman Period.


Assuntos
Embalsamamento/métodos , Cor de Cabelo , Múmias , Grupos Raciais , Carbonatos/química , Criança , Egito , Feminino , Mundo Grego , Cabelo/anatomia & histologia , História Antiga , Humanos , Masculino , Microscopia , Mundo Romano , Bicarbonato de Sódio/química , Cloreto de Sódio/química , Sulfatos/química
16.
PLoS One ; 15(2): e0229580, 2020.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-32107498

RESUMO

Despite the recent flurry of interest in various aspects of ancient urbanism, we still know little about how much traffic flowed in and out of ancient cities, in part because of problems with using commodities as proxies for trade. This article investigates another approach, which is to estimate these flows from the built environment, concentrating on transport infrastructure such as city gates. To do this, I begin by discussing a new model for how we would expect this kind of infrastructure to expand with population, before investigating the relationship between the populations of sites and the total numbers and widths of city gates, focusing on the Greek and Roman world. The results suggest that there is indeed a systematic relationship between the estimated populations of cities and transport infrastructure, which is entirely consistent with broader theoretical and empirical expectations. This gives us a new way of exploring the connectivity and integration of ancient cities, contributing to a growing body of general theory about how settlements operate across space and time.


Assuntos
Meios de Transporte/história , Urbanização/história , Cidades/história , Mundo Grego/história , História Antiga , Humanos , Modelos Teóricos , Mundo Romano/história , Cidade de Roma
18.
JAMA ; 323(3): 285, 2020 01 21.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31961407
19.
J Hist Med Allied Sci ; 75(1): 1-23, 2020 Jan 01.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31714575

RESUMO

In the classical world, "official" rationalistic medicine made therapeutic use of excrement, urine and other substances that modern humans normally regard as repulsive (this was even true of Galen, the culminating authority); and popular medicine seems to have done so on a large scale. Such practices, which finally lost their professional though not their popular acceptability in the 18th century, have been studied to good purpose by other historians, but they have never been explained in a satisfactory fashion, partly because the relevant evidence is highly diverse. The present paper, by considering the long term (pre-Greek as well as Greek and Roman) and all the relevant contexts, including ancient feelings of disgust and the general state of ancient pharmacology, and by probing people's subconscious motives, attempts to establish a multi-factor explanation. This explanation balances traditions, beliefs about the inherent qualities, physical and magical, of natural substances, and the psychological needs of both healers and the sick.


Assuntos
Atenção à Saúde/história , Fezes , Mundo Grego , Mundo Romano , História Antiga , Higiene/história , Filosofia Médica/história
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