Description

    A Rare Medical Book

    Thomas Elyot. Castel Of Helth Corrected And In Some places augmented... London: Thomas Berthelet, 1541 [1544?]. Twelvemo. [Lacks title-page (A1) - supplied in facsimile]. A2-4, [lacks A5-A8 table and arms], B-N8. [-N1 in facsimile on old paper]. [4 of 8], 72, 65-86, [2] leaves. Modern full antique calf, elaborately blind-tooled, spine banded, title gilt; corners worn at beginning and end with some minor losses at end, lower corner of A3 torn off with loss of catchmark and some letters, corners damaged in upper margin of last gathering with slight losses; numerous contemporary marginalia, browning, soiling, and some ink stains. A reasonable copy of a rare medical book. From the Krown & Spellman Collection.
    Please visit HA.com/6127 for an extended description of this lot.


    More Information:

    Elyot, Sir Thomas (c.1490-1546), humanist and diplomat.

    "Elyot's Castel of Helth completes the trilogy of his major works. It is an attempt to summarize the teachings of the ancient Greek and Roman physicians, especially Galen, so that English men and women may understand and regulate their health accordingly. It popularized the theory of the four humours and complexions, which became a basic part of the intellectual make-up of Renaissance Britain, and suggested medicines and treatments for a variety of ailments. Probably based on Elyot's studies with Linacre, it differed from Linacre's own writings, for Linacre translated the works of Galen from Greek to Latin, hoping to make them accessible to doctors but not wishing to allow ordinary men and women to diagnose their own complaints. It was Elyot who provided an accessible handbook in the vernacular." [Oxford DNB]

    "The Castel of Helth by Sir Thomas Elyot. Based entirely on humoral theory, it belongs to regimina, a class of writings on medicine and health dealing with prescribed courses of diet, exercise, way of life, and other activities for the promotion or restoration of oneÕs health. Most of the content of Elyot's work reflects the influence of medical humanism, which involved a return to original medical texts of ancient Greece and Rome.

    Elyot wrote his medical treatise with two purposes in mind. Firstly, he was concerned with Thomas CromwellÕs health, and secondly, he wished to reach the general reader as well. As a layman, Elyot had to face accusations of being ignorant and having no medical education which made him defend himself and show that universities are not essential for a knowledge of medicine."

    STC 7646. ESTC s117186.



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    Auction Dates
    August, 2015
    5th Wednesday
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