DOI: 10.14704/nq.2005.3.1.61

"BRAIN" in the Ancient Egypt

Editorial NQ


Medicine in ancient Egypt was but one aspect of an advanced civilization. It was not practiced by witch doctors as in primitive tribes, with mixture of magic, herbal remedy, and superstitious beliefs. This was acknowledged by Homer in the Odyssey: “In Egypt, the men are more skilled in Medicine than any of human kind”. The medical papyri that have come to us, seven or more, are relatively late. They date from the Twelfth Dynasty to the Twentieth (2000 to 1090), but most of them reflect professedly earlier knowledge, going back to the Old Kingdom, as far back as the Fourth Dynasty. The two earliest papyri, the Kahun and the Gardiner fragments (c. 2000), deal with diseases of women, children, and cattle. The two Most important ones, the so-called Smith and Ebers papyri, date from the seventeenth and sixteenth centuries B.C.. The Smith one is of the same age as the Rhind mathematical papyrus.


history, brain

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