Tuesday, 1 March 2011
Yes its fascinating. How dark were the dark ages? Italy was wracked by warfare from the fall of rome to the renaissance but farming went on and pockets of learning remained preserved. Many of the combatants were rival christians who left monastries alone. Medicine then made considerable use of plant oils and plants. Mostly for digestion and shipboard diseases. One of the most notable maestri of the Siennese School of Medicine was Pietro Ispano (Pope John XXI). Ispano was an illustrious philosopher, personal doctor to Emperor Frederick II, and in 1276 became Pope John XXI.
As to Florence which rose to eclipe Sienna, a leading family were the Medici. Can you see whats coming? yes the Medici began as pharmacists and their heraldic shield commemorates this as it consists of circles to depict the pills of dried plant matter they supplied. Dont mess with the pharmacists!
Posted by Ian Brealey at 14:12