Saturday, December 13, 2008
Paracelsus (Wikipedia and Catholic Encyclopedia) is an interesting footnote figure from history. He was born in what would become Switzerland in 1493 at the boundary between the Middle Ages and the Modern Period.
He was an experimentalist which made him in the language of that day, an alchemist. His field was medicine and he rejected what was in the texts of Galen and Avicenna which did not conform to his own observation. Back then it was believed that all disease was attributable to an imbalance of "the four humors of the body". Why have not we heard more about him?
He was arrogant and did not play well with others. Could he have adjusted his demeanor and achieve acceptance? Or was he doomed by the environment he lived in? It might have advanced science 100 or 200 years to have followed his methods. In any case, he is one of the people I plan to seek out when I get to heaven by the grace of God.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 5:24 PM Permalink