Monday, January 07, 2008

Ambroise Pare

"Considered as one of the Fathers of Surgery. He was a leader in surgical techniques, especially the treatment of wounds. He was also an anatomist as well as the inventor of several surgical instruments.

During his work with injured soldiers, Pare documented the pain experienced by amputees which they perceive as sensation in the amputated limb. He believed that phantom pain occurred in the brain, not the remnants of the limb, which is still the consensus of the medical community today." - quote from article on Pare at Wikipedia.

The above amazing images were found thanks to a flickr set by Celeste. They appear to be from Pare's book "DES Venins" more of which can be found in this gallery at Biblioteca.

"This book, the 1585 edition of his Oeuvres (Collected Works) is both his masterpiece and his monument, gathering together a lifetime’s experience and study. "

The following is a quote concerning dragons from the Oeuvres.. "Here are represented two types of dragons that kill elephants. The dragons are quite glorious, because by their finesse and malice they defeat elephants which are the strongest animals on earth . . . They lay in wait for the elephants, and suddenly attack them, wrapping themselves around the elephants, tying the elephants' legs with their tails so they can not walk. Then the dragons stuff their heads in the elephants' trunks, impeding their breathing. They bite the skin of the elephants which they find most tender, scratch their eyes and suck their blood, so that the elephants die." - visit this page to see the illustration of the dragon related to the text.

Pare made 26 books, including Des Monstres, a book filled with stories about sea devils and other monsters. A selection of the beasts from this book, many of which I've posted here before, can be found in this gallery of monsters at

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