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Illustration: 16th Century Bloodletting
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Illustration: 16th Century Bloodletting

Medieval Illustration of Bloodletting

Medieval Illustration of Bloodletting

license: public domain
source: Wikimedia Commons
author: unknown

An illustration depicts a physician performing a bloodletting treatment on a seated patient. The patient’s left arm is uncovered and extended, and the physician has made an incision on the upper arm. A stream of blood pours from the incision into a bowl below.


Illustration: late 13th century AD


This illustration was scanned from Den Medeltida Kokboken (The Medieval Cookbook) by Maggie Black. Here, a physician can be seen draining blood from a patient. Bloodletting was a popular form of treatment in the Middle Ages, believed to help treat a wide variety of conditions from acne to cancer.

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Carter, K. C. (2012). The decline of therapeutic bloodletting and the collapse of traditional medicine. New Brunswick (U.S.A.): Transaction Publishers.