Pharmacology and Folk Medicine: a Complex Relationship

Daniela Fausti


Remedies, mostly of vegetable origin, were used in the Greek world since ancient times (as in the Iliad ), but magical remedies were equally present (as in the Odyssey ). Rational medicine and folk medicine had a parallel existence, but in order to follow the traces of folk medicine, which has no written tradition, we have to rely on the works of its opponents, that is, the representatives of scientific medicine. The best witnesses are the authors who deal with medical botany and pharmacology, such as Theophrastus, Dioscorides, Galen, and other physicians (Soranus and Alessander Trallensis). In addition, we have some medical papyri, because pharmacological remedies were very common.


Key words: Pharmacology - Medical botany- Folk medicine

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