Book of Simplification Concerning Therapeutics and Diet


Abu Marwan Abd al-Malik Ibn Zuhr (also known by the Latinized version of his name, Avenzoar, circa 1090–1162), was the leading medical doctor in Islamic Spain. A native of Seville, he studied medicine under his father, and later went into the service of the Almoravids and Almohads. He was a friend and near contemporary of the great Arabic physician Ibn Rushd, or Averroes (1126–98). Ibn Zuhr is said to have written his most famous work, Al-Teisir Fil-Mudawat Wal-Tadbeer (Book of simplification concerning therapeutics and diet), at the suggestion of Averroes, who praised the book in his own medical encyclopedia, Al-Kulliyat (The generalities). Al-Teisir describes preparations for medicines and diets, provides clinical descriptions of diseases, and discusses surgical procedures such as tracheotomy. The original Arabic version of the text was lost, but its contents survived in Hebrew and Latin translations. This Latin edition of 1497 was edited by Hieronymus Surianus (flourished 1458–1502) and produced by the Venetian printer Otinus de Luna. The book includes a second work, a translation of Averroes’s Al-Kulliyat, generally known in the West by its Latin title Colliget.

Last updated: January 4, 2016