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7 Making Right Practice? Regulating Surgery and Medicine in Fourteenthand Fifteenth-Century Bologna

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Chapter Summary

The attempts by professors to control city surgeons were couched in terms of academic superiority and betterment of practice, reflecting this traditional hierarchy of proper education, which became the seed for a sixteenth-century tribunal made up of physicians whose task it was to supervise the medical care available in the city, called the Protomedicato. The prominence of the Protomedicato in early modern medical thought in Europe, however, tends to obscure the complicated and somewhat fraught beginnings of these regulations in individual instances, such as medieval Bologna. The relationship between the medical academy and the city of Bologna was a complex one. The medical professors threw their support behind the city, which began to establish oversight committees that reduced the role of the papacy in the government of the studium; a support evidenced by the changes in the CAM statures between 1378 and 1410.

Keywords: Bologna; Europe; medical care; Protomedicato; surgeons



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