PIETRO d’ABANO (1250-1315?). Conciliator differentiarum philosophorum et medicorum. Venice: Gabriele di Pietro, for Thomas de Tarvisio, 1476.
Pietro d’Abano was an influential man of his time. A Paduan physician, philospher and astrologer, he was in demand for lectures and teaching. Dante was among his pupils. For his heretical views he ran afoul of the Inquisition, but died before he could be executed.
The Conciliator is his greatest work. d’Abano presents the scattered medical knowledge, particularly from the Arabic and Grecian schools, in a series of questions with answers from both schools of thought. d’Abano wanted truth to emerge and contradictions be resolved. Among his important views presented in this book : air has weight, the heart is the source of veins and arteries, and that the brain is the source of nerves which convey sensation. The Library’s copy is decorated with two fine gilt and colored initials.
You may view this book in the John Martin Rare Book Room, Hardin Library for the Health Sciences. Make a gift to the Hardin Library for the Health Sciences by donating online or setting up a recurring gift with The University of Iowa Foundation.