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Mercu'rius Mo'nachus


On the Pulse

Μερκούριος Μόναχος), the reputed author of a short treatise (or fragment) on the Pulse, published at Naples, in Greek and Latin, with notes and a long intro. duction, by Salvator Cyrillus, 8vo. 1812. It does not seem to be derived from Greek sources, and nothing is known respecting the writer. Some suppose him to have been a monk, who lived in the south of Italy, about the tenth century; but Sprengel, in the last edition of his Gesch. der Arzneikunde (ii. p. 560, quoted by Choulant in his Handb. der Bücherkunde für die Aeltere Medicin) conjectures that he lived in the thirteenth century, and derived his opinions from some one who had travelled in the East,--perhaps Carpini. Cardinal Mai, however, in the preface to the fourth volume of his collection Classicor. Auctor. e Vatican. Codicib. Editor. (p. xii. &c.) affirms, apparently from actual inspection of some manuscripts containing the work, that it does not belong to Mercurius at all, but to a person called Abitianus. The writer has no means of deciding whether this assertion is correct, but it agrees well enough with the proof arising from internal evidence that the work is derived from Oriental sources, for this Abitianus must be no other than the celebrated Arabic physician Abúi )Alí Ibn Síná, commonly called Avicenna. [ABITIANUS.] [W.A.G]

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