The Tools of Asclepius
Lawrence J. Bliquez, University of Washington, Seattle
With The Tools of Asclepius Lawrence Bliquez offers the first comprehensive treatment in English of the instruments and paraphernalia employed by Greco-Roman surgeons since John St. Milne’s Surgical Instruments in Greek and Roman Times (1907).
Introductory sections cover topics ranging from literary and archaeological sources to the design, materials and production of instruments and the training and practice of the doctors-surgeons who used them. Summaries of Hippocratic and Hellenistic surgery lead to the meat of the book: tools used during the Roman Empire. These are presented by category (e.g. Cutting Instruments) broken into subcategories (Scalpel, Lithotome, etc.). A substantial appendix deals with biodegradable items, such as suppositories. Much new material is featured and the book is richly illustrated.