Among the various surprising things on the island of Kos is the Hippocratic Institute, where doctors and others meet who are interested in the pursuit of the goals of good medicine. Hippocrates and Galen were the two most famous ‘founders of medicine’ in antiquity, and Hippocrates in particular took a more passive, let the body heal itself approach, with the motto ‘do no harm’. Here’s a bust of the man himself found in the museum at the Institute…. Here is perhaps a more exact image of Hippocrates…. We know something of what he looked like also from ancient coins…. There is a famous festival of ancient medicine celebrated at the Asclepion each year….. Here are replicas of Hippocrates’s patient’s couch and doctor’s chair….
Here are some of the medical instruments of that era…. Here is a marble relief showing a patient being attended to, by a deity. The ancients did indeed believe you needed divine help to be healed… Medicine and healing are also themes that sometimes show up on Greek vases… This depicts Achilles doing the medical tasks.
And here are some interesting posters about the herbs used in healing and other processes such as back stretching devices and Hippocratic assumptions about the body….