The gem electuary was reputedly the brainchild of Maswijah al-Marindi or Mesuë the Younger, who died in AD 1015, but the recipe was first published in the 1470s. Combining finely comminuted sapphires, chalcedony emeralds, garnets and amber together with pearls, red coral, ivory and musk along with a range of herbal ingredients, an exotic and highly expensive paste, usually bound together with sugar or honey, was produced. The list of ingredients evolved slightly, especially in light of the availability of some of the herbal materials. The electuary was used, both as an individual medicine and in combination with additional...
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A History of Geology and Medicine
The historical links between geology and medicine are surprisingly numerous and diverse. This, the first ever volume dedicated to the subject, contains contributions from an international authorship of geologists, historians and medical professionals.
Rocks, minerals, fossils and earths have been used therapeutically since earliest times and details recorded on ancient papyri, clay tablets, medieval manuscripts and early published sources. Pumice was used to clean teeth, antimony to heal wounds, clays as antidotes to poison, gold to cure haemorrhoids and warts, and gem pastes to treat syphilis and the plague, while mineral springs preserved health. Geology was crucial in the development of public health. Medical men who made important contributions to geology include Steno, Worm, Parkinson, Bigsby, William Hunter, Jenner, John Hulke, Conan Doyle, Gorini and various Antarctic explorers.
A History of Geology and Medicine will be of particular interest to Earth scientists, medical personnel, historians of science and the general reader who has an interest in science.