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date: 17 September 2019

Abstract and Keywords

The chapter examines the pharmaceutical work of Dioscorides. The many texts of Hellenistic pharmacy, mostly lost, lie in the immediate background of Dioscorides’ work, and those connections are delineated here, showing links to Andromachus, Arius, Iuba, Sextius Niger, and Theophrastus. The ecumenical Roman Empire provided a wide array of medical stuffs that Dioscorides classifies by type of effect, for use by compounding pharmacists. Pharmacology melds with medical dietetics: Dioscorides exploited Arabian resins, Egyptian books providing recipes, the valued silphion of Cyrene, poisons by Mithradates, and the book of the North African king Iuba publicizing his new discovery of euphorbion. Dioscorides exploits not only plants but also parts of various animals. Disocorides is careful with the powerful analgesic drugs then available, henbane, mandrake, and opium. His fifth book covers mineral medicines and wine additives.

Keywords: Andromachus, Arius, Crateuas, Euphorbus, Mithradates, Sextius Niger, silphion, Theophrastus

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