A Literary History of Medicine Online offers a complete, annotated translation along with a new edition of The ʿUyūn al-anbāʾ fī ṭabaqāt al-aṭibbāʾ of Ibn Abī Uṣaybiʿah. This web version allows for a parallel reading of the Arabic edition and English translation. The work’s background is painted by the editors and translators in several introductory essays.
This celebrated, informative and entertaining history of medicine – the first of its kind – by the Syrian physician Ibn Abī Uṣaybiʿah (d. 1270) is the earliest comprehensive history of medicine. It contains biographies of over 432 physicians, ranging from the ancient Greeks to the author’s contemporaries, describing their training and practice, often as court physicians, and listing their medical works; all this interlaced with poems and anecdotes. The reader will find in this work an Islamic society that worked closely with Christians and Jews, deeply committed to advancing knowledge and applying it to health and wellbeing. The readable, faithful, complete translation is fully accessible to scholars and nonscholars alike.
The edition is the result of a joint University of Oxford/University of Warwick project, led by Emilie Savage-Smith, Simon Swain, and Geert Jan van Gelder. The team also included Franak Hilloowala, Alasdair Watson, Dan Burt, N. Peter Joosse, Bruce Inksetter, and Ignacio Sánchez.
Generously funded by the Wellcome Trust, this is an open access title distributed under the terms of the CC-BY-NC 4.0 License, which permits any non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author(s) and source are credited.