“De oculis”, a chapter on ocular anatomy by Constantinus Africanus
- Constantine the African,
- anatomy, history,
- ophthalmology, history
Copyright (c) 2022 Barend F. Hogewind, Françoise E. I. Hogewind
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
Purpose: The publication of the compendium Pantegni by Constantinus Africanus in the monastery of Monte Cassino in the eleventh century CE was a pivotal moment in the history of medicine in Western Europe. The work is predominantly based on the Liber regalis by Haly Abbas (Baghdad, tenth century CE). The earliest available manuscript of the Pantegni (KB 73 J6) is handwritten and has been supervised by Constantinus himself. It includes a chapter on ocular anatomy. In this paper we try to distill the anatomic description by Constantinus.
Methods: The chapter “de oculis” on ocular anatomy as found in chapter 13 of book 3 in KB 73 J6 is interpreted in the historical context and translated into Modern English.
Results: We present an English translation of the concerning chapter.
Conclusion: Constantinus bequeathed a compact but comprehensive account of the anatomy of the eye, which can be rendered into a contemporary representation with use of the historical context.