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The Quick and the Dead

Biomedical Theory in Ancient Egypt


Andrew Gordon and Calvin Schwabe

This volume uses a cross-disciplinary approach to examine the origins of ancient Egyptian medicine in the domestication, care and sacrifice of cattle. Ritual cattle sacrifice in Egypt led to a rudimentary understanding of animal anatomy and physiology, which was then applied to humans. Two original theories developed from this comparative medicine: Life as movement, especially seen in the fasciolations of excised limbs, and the male's role in reproduction. Discussions include Egypt as a cattle culture, the ka as an animating force, "living flesh," the possible animal origins of the ankh, djed and was hieroglyphs, the bull's foreleg and the Opening-of-the-Mouth ritual, Egypt's healing establishment, and veterinary medicine as it relates to the origin of human medicine.

Theodore J. Lewis

’s pleasant rains to appear again. What is to become of the monarch on death’s door? Will ʾIlu again come to the aid of the one who is called by his very name ( bn ʾil krt )? Will he heal the ailing king and by so doing cure the land that is so closely bound with royal fate? 2. The Failure of the

Mary Bachvarova

from Pelasgus and from Zeus, the Danaid maidens tell the story of Io, the cow maiden ravished by Zeus, tormented by Hera’s gad y, and Ž nally brought to birth by the healing touch of her lover to stand at the head of a line of Greek heroes. Yet, the maidens don’t realize that Io’s story works against

Eric Lewis Beverley

: 317 - 349 . Alavi , Seema . 2007 . Islam and Healing: Loss and Recovery of an Indo-Muslim Medical Tradition, 1600-1900 . Ranikhet : Permanent Black . Alavi , Seema . 2015 . Muslim Cosmopolitanism in the Age of Empire . Cambridge, MA : Harvard University Press . Ali , Moulavi


, seers, magicians, witches, healers, © Styx/Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, 2001 NIN 2 Also available online – * The abbreviations used here follow the Chicago Assyrian Dictionary and the Pennsylvania Sumerian Dictionary unless otherwise noted. I thank Dr. Laurie Pearce and Ann Guinan for

having the patient lick them o ff to absorb their healing power. Scholars such as Giddens privilege high modernity, arguing that the body is viewed nowadays with much greater sophistication than in the ancient world, since increasingly elaborate technology is dedicated to its upkeep. Meskell points out

-Anatolian cities. Overall, the image’s features and accessories support an interpretation of Artemis of Ephesus as a protective deity associated with healing, magic, and ruling power, rather than female fertility and mothering. The prevailing perception of Artemis Ephesia as a mother goddess comes from the rows of

(for example, healing god- desses who also enforce curses.) Green’s discussion demonstrates the point made by other authors in this volume that ancient iconography must be recognized as subtle, sophisticated, and  uid, fraught with ambivalence and opacity, and even secretiveness, of religious

Paolo Sartori and Bakhtiyar Babajanov

the saints to mediate between the believers and Allah over mundane matters (healing, asking for children, luck, etc.) represented a further development of a centuries-old religious practice. Indeed, invitations to perform ziyārat are to be found in the genre of pilgrims’ guide, i.e., manuals

Julia Asher-Greve

, and were responsible for many aspects of life and society such as: prosperity and fertility, love and sexuality, procreation, healing and death, grain and cattle, wisdom and dream interpretation, writing and bookkeeping, and trade. 5 As Westenholz shows, in the second millennium (i.e. post- Sumerian