Front Page Titles (by Subject) ON REGIMEN. IN THREE BOOKS. - The Writings of Hippocrates and Galen
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ON REGIMEN. IN THREE BOOKS. - Hippocrates, The Writings of Hippocrates and Galen 
The Writings of Hippocrates and Galen. Epitomised from the Original Latin translations, by John Redman Coxe (Philadelphia: Lindsay and Blakiston, 1846).
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Haller says, that Galen and Mercurialis considered this treatise as unworthy of Hippocrates. It is, adds he, certainly of great antiquity, for it contains the precepts of Heraclitus. It is wonderfully concise, obscure,a and so far Hippocratic. All things are made to consist of fire and water, and these are deemed adequate for every purpose. The first giving motion, the latter nourishment; the life or soul (anima) is even produced by them. Eight temperaments are produced by the varied proportions and powers of each; and the difference of disposition is ascribed to the different temperies of these elements,—to each of which appropriate remedial plans are adopted. Thus in the choleric, cold and humid nourishment and baths are prescribed. No mention is made of bleeding. A theory of temperaments is presented, very different from that given in the treatise “De Carnibus.” A twofold semen is here advocated, as in the tract “De Genitura,” and the dispositions are attributed to the predominance of the one or the other. The uterus is stated as being double. Exercise and emetics are important aids in practice. Between this and the third book there is not much difference.
In the subsequent portions much obscurity exists, which the great sagacity of Gesner has elucidated in the germs of animals and plants; which, if unputrefied, alternately become apparent, vegetate, and grow, and then return to an inconspicuous state. Much is interspersed, the sense and scope of which are not very readily perceived.
The argument of this first book is, that it points out the pre-requisites for instituting a healthy regimen; treats of the constituents of the animal body; of the connexion of art and nature; the union of the sexes in establishing the strength, increase, and nutrition of the body; of the temperaments as influenced by sex and age; and of various affections of the mind.—Ed.
Chap. I. The proëmium of the whole, as founded on attention, docility, and kindness. What previous information is necessary to the dietetic physician. Of the power or property of food and drink.
Chap. II. Propositions as to diet, both general and particular. As to the knowledge of the powers of food, drink, labour, the heavens, and climates, &c., in its employment.
Chap. III. Continued; discusses the principles of nature; asserts them to be two, viz., fire and water, which are endowed with four qualities, viz., hot, and dry, and cold, and moist, &c.
Chap. IV. Of the resulting compounds of the principles; nothing perishes; but, by their modification, alteration, increase and decrease ensue.
Chap. V. Further progress in the view of natural objects; and its basis laid down; treats generally of life and death, and of a divine necessity in the various changes.
Chap. VI. Of the origin, growth, and food of man; and of the wonderful harmony in the intermixture produced, &c.
Chap. VII. Of the origin and increase of the fœtus; demonstrated and explained.
Chap. VIII. A comparison of some of the actions and affections of human beings, whether derived from nature or art; confirming and illustrating the doctrine of birth and of growth.
Chap. IX. The preceding theory of the general origin and growth of man, illustrated and confirmed by induction.
Chap. X. The difference of origin and of growth in the male and female, pointed out.
Chap. XI. The difference shown further, in the diversity of numbers of fœtuses, twins, sex, &c.
Chap. XII. Further shown in the different constitutions of the human body, and the different diet necessary for different periods of life.
Chap. XIII. The same further demonstrated in the powers of the mind; its difference in strength, intellectual and sensitive.
Chap. XIV. The subject continued; the passions, &c.—Haller.
This treatise, says Gardeil, “consists of three books, in which we find prescribed, that mode of living which is best calculated to avoid disease. Although not unanimously regarded as the work of Hippocrates, and although Haller has removed it from that class, it appears to me in many respects worthy of the Father of Medicine, and I believe it is really his work. This opinion will perhaps be thought to be well-founded, by attending to what is said at No. iii. of this book, and No. viii. of the third book. We are occasionally dissatisfied by finding the author strangely deviating from his subject in the first book, and in a large part of the second. At the same time we are gratified extremely, after perusing the third. And we find, if I am not mistaken, that the subject of regimen is admirably treated in all the books united.”
Sec. I. Preamble, in regard to preceding writers on regimen; praise and blame awarded; the writer’s own views on the subject.
Sec. II. Of the preliminary information essential to the writer on regimen; the subject of gymnastics and astronomy touched upon.
Sec. III. Further necessary considerations on the subject.
Sec. IV. Of the nature of man, as constituted of two opposite principles, viz., water and fire; neither of which predominate absolutely, but differ only as to the greater or less amount.
Sec. V. The preceding principle applicable to all things, animal or others; none of which are ever entirely destroyed; nothing new is created, nor is any thing lost; life and death are merely mixtures and separations.
Sec. VI. Death, diminution, and separation are synonymous; all are under the operation of laws provided by nature; and the control of a divine necessity, involving the doctrine of a metempsychosis, or change of matter as to form, &c. The animal soul is under the same influence; that of man is a mixture of fire and water, constituting a part of himself; sundry speculations and analogies on this subject.
Sec. VII. Of what takes place in the early period of fœtation; the motions induced are owing to fire; in what manner bones, ligaments, vessels, &c., are produced; of the mixture of the male and female seed; three great hollow vessels, the vena cava, vena porta, and aorta, with their ramifications, &c.
Sec. VIII. Medicine is but an imitation of nature, as are likewise all other arts.—(Here follows a long and curious digression, respecting the greater part of the arts cultivated by man, in order to demonstrate that all are reducible to the principle of plus and minus, and continued in sections ix., x., xi., &c., to xxii., embracing divination, workers in iron, medical gymnastics, fulling, shoemaking, carpentry, architecture, cookery, tanning, sculpture, music, goldsmiths, potters, writing, public schools, merchants, and actors.)
Sec. XXIII. The author returns to the formation of man, (in whose nature all the arts participate,) in being a mixture of fire and water. The soul is expanded throughout whilst life exists, and augments with the growth of the body. Organization of the fœtus; perfect in some at forty-three days, in others in three months; the former are born at seven, the latter at nine months, bringing with them the temperament which continues through life.
Sec. XXIV. Of the formation of males and females. Twins. Superfœtation. The subject continued to sec. xxviii.
Sec. XXVIII. Of temperaments. What constitutes them. General views on regimen. The first species of temperament. The 2d, 3d, 4th, 5th, and 6th species, extending to sec. xxxiii.
Sec. XXXIV. Of the phenomena proper to the temperaments; derived from—first, the age, second, sex.
Sec. XXXV. Of different constitutions in regard to the soul; with views as to the regimen best adapted as the medicina mentis. Continued to the end, and embracing the diseases to which the mind is subjected.
This book, says Haller, is not unworthy of the Hippocratic name by its good construction; in which those things, called non-naturals by the schools, are considered, together with their powers in relation to the human body. The author derives those powers from simple qualities, viz., sweet, acrid, watery, fat; from which arise those called attenuants, calefaciants, refrigerants, purgatives, siccatives, astringents, emollients. At the commencement he treats of airs, waters, and situations, pretty much as Hipprocrates does, in his treatise under that title. He discourses largely of the food employed in Greece, the various kinds of bread and grain; then of animal food, amongst which we find that of dogs and horses. Next he mentions birds, and numerous fish which is there largely employed. To these succeed the drinks, pot-herbs, legumes, vegetables, apples, &c., which are nearly all in use at present. Of culinary preparations, and their respective value; and he terminates with gymnastics, funerals, races, baths. He adverts to the proper employment of food in removing the lassitude of unaccustomed or over-fatigue. Extols the use of vomits, and, as in the former book, he teaches that all things are constituted of fire and water.
The consideration of diet follows the relation of the principles and differences of the human body, whereby it is preserved in the same condition, or changed and modified by their quality and quantity. Hence it treats of the nature and situation of the winds and climates; of the faculties and difference of food, derived from animals and vegetables; of baths and external operations; and of different kinds of exercise.
Chap. I. Of the location and temperature of places.
Chap. II. Of the air, and of the nature and properties of the winds, as to heat, cold, moisture, &c.
Chap. III. Of food—in general, in special—cerealia—bread, variety of, and properties.
Chap. IV. Of leguminous vegetables; of flesh and its juices.
Chap. V. Of animal food; quadrupeds, birds, fish.
Chap. VI. Of drinks—water, wine, vinegar, new wine, thin wine.
Chap. VII., VIII. Of plants—potherbs. Fruits, various—mulberry, pear, apple, &c.
Chap. IX. Of certain kinds of flesh—preservation of, effects of, age of, and preparation, &c.
Chap. X. Of baths—anointing, sweat, venery, vomition, sleep, labour, rest, eating,—and, in fine, of all such things that in any way are admitted to the body.
Chap. XI. Of exercise, both general and particular.
Chap. XII. Of some inconveniences from exercise, and from over-fatigue, &c.
Gardeil has no prefatory remarks; his paragraphs are to this effect:
Sec. I. to XI. General remarks relating to the soil and habitations, the winds, of food and drinks, viz., the cerealia and their preparations, wheat, rye, barley, &c. Some observations on fresh meal, hot bread, &c.
Sec. XII. Legumes, and other vegetables, their juices, &c., to sec. xxvi.
Sec. XXVI. to XXXV. Animal food—beef, pork, &c.; dog, horse, fox, &c.
Sec. XXXV., XXXVI. Of birds—they are drier in quality than quadrupeds, owing to their having no bladder, nor urine, nor saliva, and why.*
Sec. XXXVII. to XLVI. Fish—sea, river, lake, &c.; shell-fish, dried, salted, &c.
Sec. XLVI. to XLIX. General remarks on the difference of animals as to nourishment, owing to their modes of life, their peculiar qualities, the parts used for food, &c.
Sec. XLIX. to LVII. Drinks—wines, new, old, sweet, white, &c.; vinegar, &c.; honey, &c.
Sec. LVII. to XCI. Of vegetables—pot-herbs, garden plants, wild, and cultivated, &c.
Sec. XCI. to CIX. Of fruits—summer and autumnal, pulpy fruits, &c.
Sec. CIX. to CXVII. Influence of food variously prepared; general remarks on the effects of sweet, acid, acrid, and other articles, and of condiments.
Sec. CXVII. to CXXI. Of baths—fresh, saline, hot, cold, &c. Exercise—venery. Emetics, &c.; and of their utility in constipation, and also in the opposite state.
Sec. CXXI., CXXII. Of sleep and waking. Inactivity and repose.
Sec. CXXIII., CXXIV. Influence of a single meal daily. Drinks, cold or warm, &c.
Sec. CXXV to CXLV. Exercise; gymnastics. Exercise, natural and ill-timed. Of the exercise of sight, hearing, thought, and voice, in talking, reading, &c. Walking at different periods; before or after eating, &c. Running, riding, racing, leaping, wrestling, frictions, &c. Playing at ball, holding the breath, &c.
Sec. CXLV. On the use of frictions, with sand, oil, &c., before and after gymnastics.
Sec. CXLVI. Fatigue, from want of exercise; from unaccustomed or excessive exercise. Its effects explained as arising therefrom—including remarks indicating ideas of a circulation, &c., to end.
This book, says Haller, has nothing in common with the two preceding, nor is it from Hippocrates. Clerke supposes it the work of Herodicus the Gymnast. It treats of the commencement of diseases, from too much or too little exercise in early life, and of their appropriate remedies. This chiefly depends on regimen, abstinence, vomition, and a due regulation of exercise. A weak stomach is benefited by vomiting, excited by the flesh of whelps.a In every respect the ratio medendi differs from ours. The appropriate change of diet for the different seasons is pointed out. The constant exercise of the Greeks, both in summer and winter, is remarkable. No mention is made of their use of fire. Cold bathing recommended.
Argument. The author considers himself as first properly instituting the method of dietetics. The difficulty of this attempt adverted to. Of the appropriate regimen both of rich and poor at different seasons of the year. Of the symptoms and cure of repletion and of lassitude. Of diarrhœa, crudities, bad complexion, eructations, stercoraceous vomiting, and other affections.
Chap. I. The consideration of human diet proposed. Diversity of food.
Chap. II. A healthy regimen pointed out generally for every season of the year.
Chap. III. How to discover the errors of diet in health from various kinds of repletion. Of the symptoms and cure of the first species of repletion.
Chap. IV. Signs of the second, third, and fourth species of repletion.
Chap. V. Signs of the fifth, sixth, and seventh species.
Chap. VI. Signs of the eighth, ninth, and tenth species.
Chap. VII. Signs of the eleventh, twelfth, and thirteenth species.
Chap. VIII. Of the signs and cure of two species of inanition.
Gardeil has no preliminary remarks. He divides it into twenty-three paragraphs, which are headed to the following effect.
Sec. I. Some previous and general observations on the impossibility of prescribing generally the exercise and diet fitted for all men.
Sec. II. General rules of regimen for labouring people in the four different seasons of the year. Emetics thrice a month; when.
Sec. VIII. Of the regimen for people in easy circumstances. He exults in having first discovered the rules for this, and having thus laid down a body of doctrine.
Sec. IX. Observations pointing out whereon the peculiar regimen for each individual ought to be established; 1st. On account of repletion, in a state of health; symptoms indicating such a state. 2d. Excess of exercise; the means of obviating, &c.
Sec. XI. to XIV. 3d. Of repletion, threatening peripneumony, and how to obviate. 4th. Of repletion, the symptoms of which affect the head chiefly. 5th. Of that which principally determines to the primæ viæ. 6th. Of that arising from a coldness of the stomach, causing crudities.
Sec. XV. Of that induced by excess of exercise, manifesting itself by its influence on digestion, as indicated by acid vomitings, &c., heat of stomach, &c.
Sec. XVII. Of that repletion which manifests itself in lientery. Another with crude and hardened stools; and again with putrid stools, following great fatigue; and another accompanied with dry and burnt-up stools, with vomiting. These are all described as to their respective symptoms, and the means of cure pointed out.
Sec. XXII. Of excess in walking; its symptoms and effects; and in gymnastic exercises; the symptoms, cure, &c.
[a ]“Idem mire brevis, obscurus, et hactenus Hippocraticus.”
[* ]Apparently these deficiencies should render them moister; however, Hippocrates finds no difficulty in explaining this.—Ed.
[a ]Catulorum carnibus.