The Influence of Religion on the Development of Medicine in the Middle Ages

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The Influence of Religion on the Development of Medicine in the Middle Ages

After the decline of the Roman Empire the two religions of Islam and Christianity took control over the development and progress of medicine. This period of time lasting from 1000AD till 1500AD was named the Middle Ages .During this time Islam and Christianity influenced medicine in both positive and negative ways in many areas of medicine; which will be analysed through this essay.

The downfall of the roman empire had a dramatic affect on Europe and Asia the majority of their engineering and medical breakthroughs were lost forever. However some of their books were rescued from the ruins. The majority of these books were
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So all thought they still had the knowledge of Galen and Hippocrates their understanding of illness had taken a dramatic step backwards.

Some medical practises were still used such as bleeding; because they believed in the theory of the 4 humours doctors carried out bleeding often these were usually ineffective for obvious reasons that we know today. Knowledge of anatomy did not progress due to the fact that dissections were forbidden by the church. The only place were dissections were common was in army surgery's were dissections as well as amputations were carried out but here no major break throughs were made about the human body.

Religious treatments such as praying were brought back by the church; the church insisted it was god who made you ill and therefore you must beg for forgiveness from him if you want to become well again. Also some supersititious treatment were brought back: "for toothache hang the beak of a magpie round your neck" these were offered to people by doctors. These treatments were taken very seriously by the public.

Although many of the major cities that the Romans founded had aqueducts available as well as sewers they were not managed well and most fell into disrepair. The only people who had knowledge of hygiene was the monks who occasionally bathed and changed their clothes. They had fresh water and toilets. These items

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