The Invention of Medicine: From Homer to Hippocrates

The Invention of Medicine: From Homer to Hippocrates

A preeminent classics scholar revises the history of medicine.
Medical thinking and observation were radically changed by the ancient Greeks, one of their great legacies to the world. In the fifth century BCE, a Greek doctor put forward his clinical observations of individual men, women, and children in a collection of case histories known as the Epidemics. Among his working principles was the famous maxim "Do no harm." In The Invention of Medicine, acclaimed historian Robin Lane Fox puts these remarkable works in a wider context and upends our understanding of medical history by establishing that they were written much earlier than previously thought. Lane Fox endorses the ancient Greeks' view that their texts' author, not named, was none other than the father of medicine, the great Hippocrates himself. Lane Fox's argument changes our sense of the development of scientific and rational thinking in Western culture, and he explores the consequences for Greek artists, dramatists and the first writers of history. Hippocrates emerges as a key figure in the crucial change from an archaic to a classical world.
Elegantly written and remarkably learned, The Invention of Medicine is a groundbreaking reassessment of many aspects of Greek culture and city life.

Title:The Invention of Medicine: From Homer to Hippocrates
ISBN:9780465093441
Format Type:

    The Invention of Medicine: From Homer to Hippocrates Reviews

  • Naia Pard

    Disclaimer: I received an advanced copy from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. OMG!I have never EVER been so excited about a non-fiction book. I am myself incredulous at how much I have love...

  • Lisa Konet

    This is a great for anyone who is curious about the origins of Western Medicine. The author obviously is passionate about ancient Greece and well known philosopher's ideas. Well written and insightful...

  • Mandy

    Even someone who knows nothing about the ancient Greek world will probably have heard of the Hippocratic Oath that doctors still have to take. This academic, and admittedly quite dense at times, book ...

  • Arevik  Heboyan

    A brilliant work of presenting the invention and development of medicine as a scientific filed and all the external and history/era specific stimuli, ideas, people who affected the development of idea...

  • Amanda | District Reads

    Extremely dry, although interesting at points. I would have appreciated more anecdotal storytelling - but it is likely meant to not be that kind of book. That said, it's definitely a resource, brings ...

  • Margaret Heller

    Reviewed for Library Journal. What a treat....

  • Christine

    Robin Lane Fox's "The Invention of Medicine" is a thorough review of Ancient Greek views on medicine. The book is approachable if a little dense. Assuming you have even a passing interest in how our p...

  • Bits of Lit

    The Invention of Medicine is a thorough study of medicine in the times of the ancient Greeks. Starting with portrayals in Homer's Iliad, it captures you with its exhaustively researched content. The o...

  • zhane

    3/5 stars!I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley. All thoughts and opinions are my own.I learned a lot about the history of Western medicine in ...

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