Galen, Method of Medicine

LCL 518: 114-115

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οἱ σκοποὶ δ᾿ οἱ θεραπευτικοὶ κατὰ μὲν τὴν εἰς δύο τομὴν ἥ τε διάθεσις ἣν θεραπεύομεν ὑπάρχει καὶ ἡ τῶν τοῦ κάμνοντος μορίων κρᾶσις. ἐγχωρεῖ δ᾿, ὡς ἐλέχθη, καὶ δι᾿ ἑνὸς ἑρμηνεῦσαι κεφαλαίου, θεραπευτικὸν εἰπόντων ἡμῶν εἶναι σκοπὸν ἕνα κοινὸν ἁπάντων νοσημάτων, τὴν ἐναντίωσιν· οὗ τεμνομένου γεννᾶσθαι τοὺς δύο, τοῦ μὲν νοσήματος ἐνδεικνυμένου τὴν τῶν ἐναντίων ἑαυτῷ βοηθημάτων χρῆσιν, τῆς δὲ τοῦ θεραπευσομένου κράσεως ὀριζούσης ἅμα τῷ νοσήματι τὸ μέτρον τῆς ἐναντιώσεως. ἐρρέθη δ᾿ ἐν 736Kἐκείνοις ὡς καὶ τὸ περιέχον ἡμᾶς ἕνα ποιήσασθαι | τὸν σκοπὸν ἐγχωρεῖ. καὶ ὡς ὁπόταν εἰς δύο μόνους τὴν πρώτην ποιησώμεθα τομήν, ἤτοι γ᾿ ἐν τοῖς νοσεροῖς αἰτίοις ἢ ἐν τοῖς ὑγιεινοῖς, τίθεσθαι χρὴ τὸ περιέχον. ὄντων δ᾿ αἰτίων ὑγιεινῶν ἁπάντων τῶν ποιούντων ὑγείαν, ἓν ἐξ αὐτῶν ἐστι τὸ καλούμενον βοήθημα, κατὰ διαφόρους ἐννοίας ἔσχατον καὶ πρῶτον ὑγιεινὸν αἴτιον ὀρθῶς λεγόμενον. ἔσχατον μὲν γὰρ ἔσται τῷ χρόνῳ, διότι φύσις καὶ τέχνη καὶ τύχη τῷ χρόνῳ πρότερα τῶν βοηθημάτων ἐστὶν ὑγείας αἴτια· πρῶτον δὲ καθ᾿ ὅσον αὐτὸ ψαύει τοῦ νοσοῦντος, ἀλλοιοῦν τὴν διάθεσιν αὐτοῦ· καὶ διὰ τὴν ἐκ τούτου γινομένην ἀλλοίωσιν τῶν νοσούντων σωμάτων εἰς ὑγείαν ἀγομένων ἡ τέχνη καὶ ὁ τεχνίτης καὶ ἡ τύχη αἴτια τῆς ὑγείας γίνεται, οὐ τῷ πρώτως αὐτὰ τὰς νόσους ἐκκόπτειν, ἀλλὰ τῷ δι᾿ ἑτέρων ὑλῶν ἐπιτηδείων, αἵτινες ὀνομάζονται βοηθήματα.

φλεβοτομία γὰρ αὐτὴ μὲν καθ᾿ ἑαυτὴν αὐτὸ δὴ


Method of Medicine XI

The therapeutic indicators, based on a twofold division, are the condition which we are treating and the krasis of the parts of the patient. However, it is also possible, as I said, to describe them under one heading, if we say there is one common therapeutic indicator of all diseases—opposition. When this is divided, it generates the two, since the disease indicates the need of remedies opposite to itself while the krasis of the person who will be treated, along with the disease, determines the measure of the opposition. It was said in that treatise that it is also possible to make the indicator a single one: what surrounds us (the ambient air). It was also said that, whenever we make the736K primary division into two only, we must place the ambient air either in the causes of disease or the causes of health. Since the causes of health are all those things that bring about health, one of these is what we call a remedy which, depending on different concepts, is rightly termed both a last and a first cause of health. It will be last in time because nature, craft and chance are prior in time to remedies as causes of health. It is first to the extent that it affects the one who is diseased and changes his condition and, because of the change occurring from this when diseased bodies are brought to health, the craft, the craftsman and chance become causes of health, not because they eradicate the diseases primarily, but because [they do so] through other suitable materials which are termed remedies.

Thus phlebotomy, in and of itself, has actually acquired

DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.galen-method_medicine.2011