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Did the church help or hinder medical progress in the middle ages?

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Introduction

Did the church help or hinder medical progress in the middle ages? This essay will study the factors that helped & hindered medicine during the middle ages, & come to the conclusion on whether it helped or hindered more, & also how much progress medicine really did make. How the church helped - The church helped medical progress because it set up a lot of universities, this spread the medical knowledge & ideas of Galen, which was correct in some areas. The church also helped because it believed that public health was very important, they regarded fresh water a priority. ...read more.

Middle

Doctors were also trained around this time, it helped because then to become a doctor you had to be trained, so at least they had some idea what they were doing. How the church hindered - The church hindered by only sticking to Galen's ideas because they fitted in with Christian beliefs, & although this helped in some ways, it hindered more because Galen's knowledge of anatomy was innacurate, as he had studied the anatomy of animals instead of that of humans. Another thing that really did hinder was when Roger Bacon challenged Galen's ideas and was imprisoned by the church for heresy. ...read more.

Conclusion

The training of doctors was also hindered since the doctors could only read the manuscripts of acient writers, such as Galen & Hippocrates, whose ideas were limited (i.e. The four humours & Galen dissecting animals.) If they had dared question these ideas they probably would have been imprisoned for heresy. Conclusion - I conclude that although the Christian church did help medical progress (i.e. Public health.) It mainly hindered by refusing to listen to anyone else's ideas other than Galen, whose knowledge of human anatomy wasn't always accurate aince he was only able to dissect & study animals. I think that if the church had accepted other people's ideas (i.e. Roger Bacon) then medicine would have made more progress. ...read more.

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