No expert, but...
Posted by ElaineL on June 09, 1998 at 07:49:58:
In response to While we're on the subject of physicians, doctors, etc., written by Carolyn B on June 08, 1998 at 21:52:08
] How professionalized was the practice of medicine at this point? I know that the 19th C. was when the doctors and scientists got increasingly professionalized (setting standards for training, discovering hygiene,etc.) but where did things stand at the beginning of the century?
I can't remember which book this is from, but I recall that now was the time scientists were becoming enamored with chemicals and solutions that came without the use of the typical lotions and potions that the womanfolk had conjured in the stillroom. THe impression I got was that it was a kind of male arrogance/pride attitude that their medicine was better because its origin was more man-made.
Indeed, Maria-Bernadette, the way I recall it (though could easily be flawed) is that "physician" and "apothecary" were one and the same. And the apothecary was the one you sent for because he had the "good" medicine--see previous paragraph. And it was a respectable trade--but it was still trade.
The surgeon was lower than the apothecary because he actually used his hands! Certainly the lowest form of trade =) So, no, a family of standing would not be excited about their son becoming a surgeon.
(My how times change!)
- Apothecary vs. Physician Peg 08:47:34 6/09/98 (4)
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