Four surgical treatises, printed in the last year of the fifteenth century, make up the oldest illustrated printed book in the Sibbald Library. The second one, the Cyrurgia of Albucasis, is the most interesting and I shall deal only briefly with the others.
Quasicrystal patterns have remarkable properties: they do not repeat periodically, and have special symmetry—and were not understood in the West until the 1970s.
Ideas in a thirteenth-century treatise on the nature of matter still resonate today, say Tom C. B. McLeish and colleagues.
How to turn water into wine, make a cross turn by itself, or have worms appear on cooked meat – some fun medieval magic tricks!
Up towards the ceiling vault of the Nidaros Cathedral, a number of artworks are hidden from public view. Many of the stone sculptures portray mythological animals and other scary creatures. In such company, one would imagine that human faces were also intended to evoke fear and anguish. Do they depict people with diseases?
One of the earliest ideas about vision is that it depends on light that streams out of the eye and detects surrounding objects. This view was attacked in its own time and finally disproved more than 2000 years later.
A Professor in Applied Linguistics believes he has decoded a few words from the mysterious Voynich Manuscript, a 600-year old work that has baffled scholars for the last hundred years.
Our findings can predict age-associated decline in Medieval soldiers’ physical performance, and have potential implications in understanding the outcomes of past European military battles.
‘Royal’ pediculosis in Renaissance Italy: lice in the mummy of the King of Naples Ferdinand II of Aragon (1467-1496)
Pediculosis seems to have afflicted humans since the most ancient times and lice have been found in several ancient human remains. Examination of the head hair and pubic hair of the artificial mummy of Ferdinand II of Aragon (1467-1496), King of Naples, revealed a double infestation with two different species of lice…
In the Middle Ages, Christian Europe was in a state of intellectual stagnation and the theological doctrine that pain serves God’s purpose and must not be alleviated militated against the improvement in methods of narcosis. Nuland points out that the Middle Ages in Europe were dark ages so far as advances in the pharmacology of anesthesia were concerned.
Stature and frailty during the Black Death: the effect of stature on risks of epidemic mortality in London, A.D. 1348-1350
Recent research has shown that pre-existing health condition affected an individual ’ s risk of dying duringthe 14th-century Black Death. However, a previous study of the effect of adult stature on risk of mortality during the epidemic failed to ﬁnd a relationship between the two; this result is perhaps surprising given the well-documented inverse association between stature and mortality in human populations.
Were medieval drugs effective at helping patients? Can modern pharmaceuticals make use of their knowledge?
It seems there’s one fact about the Middle Ages that always seems to astound people: medieval people did not actually think the world was flat.
Galileo would have dearly loved to explain to his examiners how his observations made belief in the Copernican system more intellectually respectable even though he had no irrefutable proof of the Earth’s motion, but this was an opportunity he never got.
Here we discuss how some medieval scholars in the Western Europe viewed the form of the world and the problem of the Antipodes
Political Science in Late Medieval Europe: The Aristotelian Paradigm and How It Shaped the Study of Politics in the West
While scholars have provided many interesting insights into the role of Aristotle in shaping later political theory, I argue that they are inadequate to explain the rapid “Aristotelianization” of political thought in the later Middle Ages.
In 1271, Kublai Khan founded the Bureau of Islamic Astronomy in Peking, which operated alongside the long-established Chinese Astronomical Bureau.
The Medieval Metal Industry Was the Cradle of Modern Large-Scale Atmospheric Lead Pollution in Northern Europe
This study indicates that the contemporary atmospheric pollution climate in northern Europe was established in Medieval time, rather than in the Industrial period. Atmospheric lead pollution deposition did not, when seen in a historical perspective, increase as much as usually assumed with the Industrial Revolution (1800 A.D.).
People in the Middle Ages asked what was the moon made of? How far away was it? Could it make my child vindictive? Here is what they found out.
All legislation of Byzantium from the earliest times also condemned abortions. Consequently, foeticide was considered equal to murder and infanticide and the result was severe punishments for all persons who participated in an abortive technique reliant on drugs or other methods. The punishments could extend to exile, confiscation of property and death.
I will argue that what medieval scholars did with natural philosophy and the role they assigned to it in intellectual life was ultimately more important than what they did with the technical sciences.