Poking fun at Physicians

For another project I have been reading lots of early modern joke books and I thought I’d share some of what I’d found here. Books of amusing songs, poems, funny stories and jokes, known as jest-books sold a lot in the seventeenth century. These were not a new form, as Michael Mangan has pointed out, …

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Spare Ribs

During my PhD I had trouble with my arms. After speaking to a fantastically enthusiastic surgeon it was revealed that I have cervical ribs. An extra set of ribs growing out of my cervical spine (you can see my x-ray here). These spare ribs complicate the placement of my blood vessels and nerves. I have …

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Calling for Back Up

Daniel Turner was born in London, probably, on 18 September 1667. When he grew up he served a two-year apprenticeship under London surgeon Charles Bateman, and a five-year apprenticeship with Thomas Lichfield.┬áIn 1691 he joined the Company of Barber Surgeons. In 1711 Turner moved from being a surgeon to be a physician; he became a …

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Good to Meet You

This week, Early Modern Medicine’s contributing editor, Sara Read, chatted to The Guardian┬ánewspaper as part of their Good to Meet you series. The interview mentions her first monograph Menstruation and the Female Body in Early Modern England, published by Palgrave Macmillan in 2013. To read more from this book, visit http://www.palgrave.com/us/book/9781137355027 where a free preview …

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Metaphorical Magnitude

In my current project on men’s sexual health (including genitourinary conditions and afflictions of the groin) I have been reading a lot of descriptions and case notes of testicular swellings and hernias. One of the things that has stood out to me and intrigued me is the use of comparisons to explain how big swellings …

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