Early ophthalmology was influenced by the book De Oculis..., written by Benevenutus Grassus of Jerusalem,1 probably the most popular ophthalmic manual of the Middle Ages. Also popular were his Jerusalem eye drops (collyrium hierosolimitanum). Not much is known about the life of Benevenutus, but it seems that he was born in Judea during the 11th century, his mother tongue was Hebrew, he attended medical school in Salerno, Italy, and he practiced ophthalmology in southern Europe. This famous ophthalmologist evidences pride in his Jerusalem origin not only in his book but also by naming his pills, drops, and ointments after Jerusalem and by including the city's name in his own. Possibly, Benevenutus represents a trend that still exists of Israelis receiving their postgraduate education abroad.
The history of present-day ophthalmology in Israel starts in 1912 with the immigration of Abraham Ticho, MD, and Aryeh Feigenbaum, MD, to Israel. They were
Merin S. Ophthalmology in Israel. Arch Ophthalmol. 1985;103(10):1586-1589. doi:10.1001/archopht.1985.01050100162042