England has traditionally been understood as a latecomer to the use
of forensic medicine in death investigation, lagging nearly
two-hundred years behind other European authorities. Using the
coroner's inquest as a lens, this book hopes to offer a fresh
perspective on the process of death investigation in medieval
England. The central premise of this book is that medical
practitioners did participate in death investigation - although not
in every inquest, or even most, and not necessarily in those
investigations where we today would deem their advice most
pertinent. The medieval relationship with death and disease, in
particular, shaped coroners' and their jurors' understanding of the
inquest's medical needs and led them to conclusions that can only
be understood in context of the medieval world's holistic approach
to health and medicine. Moreover, while the English resisted
Southern Europe's penchant for autopsies, at times their findings
reveal a solid understanding of internal medicine. By studying
cause of death in the coroners' reports, this study sheds new light
on subjects such as abortion by assault, bubonic plague,
cruentation, epilepsy, insanity, senescence, and unnatural death.
|Country of origin:
||Routledge Research in Medieval Studies
Sara M. Butler
||Electronic book text
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