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4 Cards in this Set

  • Front
  • Back


- and illustration of a punishment for sin

- starts as a painful skin disease , followed by paralysis and eventually death

- no treatment so leper’s were banished as the breath was thought to be contagious even though it could only spread from very close contact

- if leper’s were permitted to stay at home they had to wear cloaks and ring a bell to announce their presence

- they were forbidden from going down narrow alleys


- the alignment of the planets and stars was considered very important when diagnosing illness

- a physician would consult star charts , looking at when the patient was born and when they fell ill to identify what was wrong

- the church frowned upon the idea of astrology as it seemed only one step away from predicting the future

- when the black death arrived the church became more acceptant of it as many believed the black death was caused by the bad alignment of the planets

- astrology was a supernatural explanation for disease

Theory of the Four Humours

- this theory stated that as the universe was made up of four basic elements , the body must be made up of four humours which were created by digesting different foods

- the four humours were:

• blood

• phlegm - the watery substance coughed up or sneezed out of the nose , or expelled in tears

• black bile - not one particular substance in the body , but probably referred to clotted blood , visible in excrement or vomit

• choler/yellow bile - this appears in pus or vomit

- there was a belief that all the humours must be balanced and equal and if the mix became unbalanced , you became ill

- this theory was developed by Hippocrates

Theory of Opposites

- theory by Hippocrates of the four humours developed further by Galen into the theory of opposites

- includes the idea of balancing the humours using the theory

- he suggested that too much phlegm , which was linked to water and cold , could be cured by eating hot peppers

- or a fever/excess of blood , could be cooled down with a cucumber , which would cool the patient down when eaten

- Galen also theorised that the circulatory system circulated blood generated in the liver , and the blood was then distributed around the body