Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 79.djvu/230

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influential existence. There was a celebrated hospital at Montpellier, taking advantage of the salubrious climate of the Riviera, and its proximity to Spain made the Moorish learning accessible.

The thirteenth century, in which occurred the downfall of Arabian empire and culture, saw in Europe a great intellectual revival. Many great universities were founded within a few decades from the year 1200, such as those of Bologna, Padua, Naples and Rome in Italy, Paris, Orleans and Toulouse in Prance, Oxford and Cambridge in England, and others. The medical instruction given in these institutions, and in others founded later, has ever since been the fountain of medical knowledge for the world and conferred upon the medical profession the stamp of learning and repute.

During the middle ages medicine shared in the intellectual characteristics of the period. It was an age of dogmatism and intellectual narrowness; the church exercised a censorship over all thought, and all tendency to mental independence and originality was repressed. The empirical method of gaining knowledge, that is, the accumulation of facts by direct and careful observation and study of natural phenomena, was rejected. This method was too slow and laborious, and left too many blanks in knowledge, to be acceptable. The ancient and medieval philosophers preferred to construct complete schemes of the universe out of their own minds, and took such pride in these brilliant creations of their own intellects, and regarded them as so complete and perfect, that observation of nature was regarded as superfluous and unnecessary. Men engaged in fine-spun controversies over metaphysical and theological subtleties and dwelt on the unimportant and unreal trivialities of their subjective philosophies, to the neglect of the important and real things of the objective world. Schools were plentiful and vigorous; but they were under the ecclesiastical control and influence, and simply fostered the scholastic dogmatism and dialectics. There were men in those days with as great intellects as the world has ever produced; but they frittered away their gigantic powers on inane trivialities. Dogmas and authorities were rigidly adhered to, originality and innovations were repressed, and for centuries mental advancement was inhibited.

Medieval medicine displayed all these characteristics (scholastic medicine). The doctrines of the ancients, especially Galen and Hippocrates, and of the Arabians were rigidly followed, and until the Renaissance there was no change and no progress. Medical thought was dominated by the humoral pathology or theory of disease, which had appeared as early as in the writings of Hippocrates. According to this theory health consisted in a perfect combination and action of the elements and humors of the body, while disease resulted from a derangement or corruption of them. Pour humors were recognized, mucus, blood, bile (yellow bile) and black bile (atrabile). Mucus was sup-