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was the court physician
A physician is a health care provider who practices the profession of medicine, which is concerned with promoting, maintaining or restoring human health through the study, diagnosis, and treatment of disease, injury and other physical and mental impairments...
to the Roman emperor Claudius
Claudius , was Roman Emperor from 41 to 54. A member of the Julio-Claudian dynasty, he was the son of Drusus and Antonia Minor. He was born at Lugdunum in Gaul and was the first Roman Emperor to be born outside Italy...
About 47 AD, at the request of Gaius Julius Callistus
Gaius Julius Callistus was a Greek imperial freedman during the reigns of Roman Emperors Caligula and Claudius. Callistus was originally a freedman of Caligula, and was given great authority during his reign, which he used to amass even greater wealth...
, the emperor's freedman, he drew up a list of 271 prescriptions (Compositiones
), most of them his own, although he acknowledged his indebtedness to his tutors, to friends and to the writings of eminent physicians. Certain traditional remedies are also included. The work has no pretensions to style, and contains many colloquialisms. The greater part of it was transferred without acknowledgment to the work of Marcellus Empiricus
Marcellus Empiricus, also known as Marcellus Burdigalensis , was a Latin medical writer from Gaul at the turn of the 4th and 5th centuries. His only extant work is the De medicamentis, a compendium of pharmacological preparations drawing on the work of multiple medical and scientific writers as...
(c. 410), De Medicamentis Empiricis, Physicis, et Rationabilibus
, which is of great value for the correction of the text of Largus.
See the edition of the Compositiones
by S. Sconocchia (Teubner 1983), which replaced the well-outdated edition of G. Helmreich (Teubner 1887).