Monastic Domestic Medicine in Italy

By Emily Hagens When I encountered three manuscript recipe books by an early seventeenth-century monk in the Wellcome Library last fall, I was excited to investigate what differences I might see between the traditionally categorized domestic medicine (women and men in households) and other types of domestic practice in early modern Italy. [1] The monk, … Continue reading Monastic Domestic Medicine in Italy

Introducing the Summer University on Food and Drink Studies

Graham Harding (Oxford) and Beat Kümin (Warwick) Founded in 2001, the European Institute for the History and Cultures of Food (IEHCA) has become a major research and public engagement hub. It runs an annual open convention, thematic colloquia and numerous outreach and heritage activities. Based at Tours in France, it collaborates with the city, region, … Continue reading Introducing the Summer University on Food and Drink Studies

Sugar versus honey in Byzantine recipes

By Petros Bouras-Vallianatos The Byzantine Empire, with its capital in Constantinople (now Istanbul), then a mainly Greek-speaking region, constituted a natural crossroads between East and West for more than a millennium (AD 324–1453). Its history is an indispensable part of the medieval period in both Europe and the Middle East. In the field of medicine, … Continue reading Sugar versus honey in Byzantine recipes

True but not Tested: Experimentation in the Apothecary’s Shop

By Valentina Pugliano Testing and standardization are firmly entrenched in the pharmacological imagination of western biomedicine and its public. Before a new drug can be put on the market, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration demands five rounds of trials. Approximately 70% of new ‘recipes’ fails to pass the first round. Similarly, the European Medicines … Continue reading True but not Tested: Experimentation in the Apothecary’s Shop