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Title: Medicine in flux :an examination of Lázaro de Soto's exegesis of Places in man
Authors: Preston, Brianne Alysse
Issue Date: 2015
Publisher: Newcastle University
Abstract: This thesis examines Lázaro de Soto's commentary on the Hippocratic text, Places in Man, which is included in his 1594 volume, Tomus primus commentationum in Hippocratis libros. Castilian medicine in the Renaissance has been the subject of only limited study in Anglophone literature. Moreover, de Soto himself has received even less attention and thus a contextualisation of this author and his commentary provides a unique opportunity to broaden our understanding of how ancient medicine was utilised by Renaissance physicians. A case study approach is employed to examine what can be learned about the author of the commentary himself, in addition to asking how this information can be extrapolated further to gain a greater understanding of early modern medicine. This thesis uses both de Soto's work and his biography to address these questions. Many issues that have informed de Soto's medical understanding are considered, including his education and career, and wider medical movements, such as Vesalianism and humanism. Additionally, specific areas of medicine are given special consideration, including anatomy, physiology, pathology and nosology, precepts and de Soto's reception of the Hippocratic author's ideology. In these explorations of de Soto's comments certain trends begin to emerge. The first, which de Soto states explicitly in his dedication, is a concern for the utilitas publica, as the author tries to provide useful medical information and clarification of the Hippocratic text for practical purposes. Moreover, de Soto uses his commentary as a means to demonstrate his humanist erudition, copiously citing ancient authors, both medical and literary. Finally, throughout de Soto's comments he champions the contested Galenism, rejecting newer theories and connecting Galenism to Places in Man in order to strengthen Galenic authority. In short, de Soto employs this commentary to further both his career and his Galenic understanding of medicine.
Description: PhD Thesis
Appears in Collections:School of Historical Studies

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