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Article
May 5, 1956

Soranus' Gynecology

JAMA. 1956;161(1):115. doi:10.1001/jama.1956.02970010117040

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Abstract

Soranus was one of the most learned, critical, and lucid authors of antiquity. Like many Greek physicians he practiced medicine in Rome. He died at about the time Galen was born, in the early second century. He wrote nearly 20 books, of which this is the most important. His other writings dealt with internal medicine, surgery, anatomy, hygiene, materia medica, embryology, and other branches of medicine. This book is divided into part 1, which deals with the midwife, and part 2, which deals with obstetrics. Soranus' first requirement of a midwife was literacy. "Gynecology" also contained data on pediatrics. There is reason to assume that it was illustrated, but none of the original illustrations have been preserved. It contains many interesting discussions, comments, and instructions. Among them are the following: "It is good to preserve the state of virginity until menstruation begins by itself, for this will be a definite

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