Classics 373: Ancient Medicine (FIG)

James McKeown
Humanities, Intermediate
3 credits

The FIG: Perspectives on Medicine and Healing

Can you imagine a world in which doctors knew nothing about blood circulation or microbes, in which magic and medicine were often combined, in which surgery was performed without anesthetics? Such was life in ancient Greece and Rome. And yet, many of the medical discoveries and practices of the Greeks and Romans were of fundamental importance in the development of Western medicine, and laid the foundation for some of the most basic tenets of modern medicine. The purpose of this course is to give an account of the various aspects of the healing profession in antiquity, focusing in particular on the ways in which it differed from or anticipated medical practices nowadays.