The aphorisms of Hippocrates


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The aphorisms of Hippocrates
with a translation into Latin and English by Thomas Coar


(born 460 , island of Cos, Greecedied 375, Larissa, Thessaly) Greek physician regarded as the father of medicine. During his lifetime, he was admired as a physician and teacher. Plato and Aristotle mention him in several of their own works, and Aristotle’s student Meno recounts his ideas about the causes of disease. The Hippocratic Collection (Corpus Hippocraticum) was assembled for the Library of Alexandria in Egypt. About 60 medical writings have survived that bear Hippocrates’ name, most of which were not written by him. The collection deals with anatomy, clinical subjects, diseases of women and children, prognosis, treatment, surgery, and medical ethics. The Hippocratic Oath (suspected not to have been written by Hippocrates), also part of the Hippocratic Collection, dictates the obligations of the physician to students of medicine and the duties of pupil to teacher. In the oath, the physician pledges to prescribe only beneficial treatments, to refrain from causing harm or hurt, and to live an exemplary life.