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Health Preservation in Late Medieval England: An Exercise of Man and Beast

Aristotle's concept of balance had a great influence on development of medieval medical theory, helping to determine safest and most appropriate form of exercise. The obvious risk of hydration when exercising too hot or too cold means that energy activity should be limited to most moderate times of day whenever possible.

In addition, optimistic people are prescribed a gentle exercise regimen that prevents accumulation of toxins without raising their temperature to dangerous levels, while opposite is true for blue people. Ideally, all different parts of body should work at same "soft" level of intensity, with arms and legs moving at same speed to generate an even level of moderate heat. In fact, allowance must be made for disease, injury, or simple wear and tear, and elderly in particular are advised to rest those parts of their anatomy that appear weak or fragile and focus on those parts that are still functioning effectively.

For example, anyone with sore legs, varicose veins, or arthritic joints should take up rowing or weight lifting. Emphasizing dangers of excess heat on body, which begins to dry out as it loses essential moisture, Guidelines for Health in Older Ages stresses need for exercise. Even if person is stiff, rocking motion helps to disperse liquid matter, thus protecting vital organs", massage gently and rub with oil in morning.

The brain also responds to stimulation with conversation, debate and math problems and stays active after body begins to fail,Franciscan friar Roger Bacon argued in his treatise on slowing down aging that horseback riding or light walking is most beneficial way strengthen limbs of elderly and ensure that nourishment and a life-affirming spirit reach every part of body. Those who have been physically active since youth enjoy a predictable advantage because "regardless of their age, they work harder than unaccustomed young women."

In contrast, caregivers' guidance focuses on need to combine activity and rest to gradually reduce water levels, dry out tissues, and strengthen muscle tissue, authors suggest. Gentle play before a child's meal is better than vigorous exercise for a good appetite, and teenage boys are ready for regimen that precocious masculinity finds appropriate.

Sir Thomas Eliot draws on a long tradition of medieval advice literature in his highly successful book, A Book Called Gurnur, in which he proposes ideal "education or form: to take a gentleman's child to a gentleman's child, i.e. bar at bar.

Health Preservation in Late Medieval England: An Exercise of Man and Beast

The work consists of at least thirty-seven sheets devoted to various types of exercises that not only promote health by cleansing "channels of body", but also encourage virtues admired by his fellow humanists. Behavior, various activities, including tennis. , swimming, running, and even dancing were sanctioned, although archery seemed to achieve this perfection "between extremes of meekness and meanness" and was therefore most useful.

Elliot clearly had patriotic and educational goals, as a series of Royal Decrees and Acts of Parliament from 1360s directed Englishmen and boys to develop their archery skills for sake of national security, while forgoing other pastimes. It should be noted, however, that from 1462 archery butts were provided in infirmary of Westminster Abbey, where monks not naturally bound by this legislation could only practice for their own health.

As expected, moderation is more important during epidemics, and popular pamphlets about plague, or plague pamphlets that circulated in fifteenth century England, warned readers to avoid fatty foods and "eat tirelessly, as everyone thinks pores of body and greedy window dressing."

However, some light exercise is clearly needed to stimulate digestive system and remove excess substances that make a person more susceptible to infections,, Trader Ferrell writes while in plague-ravaged Bologna. Francesco di Marco Dattini's letter reflects spread of medical knowledge among Italian professional class, since author was a notary and not a doctor.

Don't let sun go down behind hills and go outside without you, or if you really can't, a little exercise before a meal will tire you out but won't make you sweat, you should have a piece of firewood and a saw, then a few strokes or a few quick steps up stairs, because your food will die without help of nature, even if you do not stir coals, so food in your stomach will freeze from lack of movement.

Health Preservation in Late Medieval England: An Exercise of Man and Beast

The Benedictine monk John Lydgate addressed urban audience with a similar appeal, but in a more everyday language. His Diet and Doctrine of Plague warns readers against laziness and excess, reminding them of "Claire Eyre and Woking Marquis Gordes de Gestein". They were urged to "cover trash with curtains" while avoiding "mysterious explosions" and plague miasma that can be caused by dunghills and other dangers of social life.

It is interesting to observe here relationship between physical exercise and those life-enhancing "spiritual accidents" that serve to strengthen life and vitality in their constant struggle against disease. Since Lydgate wrote poetry for mass consumption, he naturally favored walking as easiest and cheapest form of exercise, but in such a hierarchical society, status remained a minefield for writers.

"There were as many spies as there were Ben Dowers," reported one of first printed texts, "some rich, others poor." Anad of New Villa recommended horseback riding to King James of Aragon because, apart from fact that it involved many different parts of body, it seemed to be most suitable for a monarch.

Despite Galen's passion for ball games, Anard felt that it would be indecent for a head of state and that his position would be further damaged if he participated in competitive contact sports such as wrestling. He was also echoed by Sir Thomas Elliot for whom riding was also "the most honorable sport that conjures up noble man of O'Reilly", implying his desire for middle-class reading.

It is not surprising that his scathing criticism of "football", in which he states that "any aristocracy loves, where instead of bestial fury and extreme violence, a painful process, and therefore resentment and anger, will be established in three stages of eternity." ". Hunting on foot or on horseback has long met all necessary criteria for belonging to ruling elite.

Health Preservation in Late Medieval England: An Exercise of Man and Beast

Galen believed that since "the best sports are those that not only exercise body, but also delight soul", hunting with dogs is an ideal recreation, "so powerful is movement of soul." He claimed that "many people got rid of illnesses by mere pleasures." In an eloquent preface to his "Song of Pursuit," Gaston Fib, comte de Foix, quotes more famous Galen. His predecessor, Hippocrates, extolled virtues of those who diet and exercise hard.

Despite these enormous demands, clerics, especially members of religious orders, must not ride horses for recreation and certainly must not hunt. Church reformers and satirists alike have attacked monasteries for their widespread disregard for this prohibition, but many religious leaders seem to be wary of sticking to a more appropriate formula or, importantly, want a more appropriate course of action.

In 1444, Volcourt monks purchased friars' sanitary facilities in what is now Belgium, showing that even small houses in Northern Europe had "normal" conditions, especially suited to their sedentary and highly regulated lifestyle. . First, we emphasize importance of "soft or even exercise" in fresh air to avoid addiction to potentially harmful laxatives.

Whether they have ordered a similar guide or not, British community also believes in need for proper rest conditions and schedules as main means of maintaining health and happiness. In 1455, for example, Benedictines of Durham complained that although their unhealthy diet made this supply vital, there was not enough room in their cramped dwellings for proper exercise.

1535 Bristol, abbot of St. Augustine's, who protests against "stubborn and vagabond" restrictions imposed on his community by one of Thomas Cromwell's surrogates, confirms this. The information in which he refers to "relaxation" of veins that carry humoral substances throughout body shows how widespread theories discussed above about human physiology have become.

Health Preservation in Late Medieval England: An Exercise of Man and Beast

The author contends that green spaces are more than a mere precaution, and that Augustinian Society in Barnwell, Cambridgeshire, demonstrated pragmatic nature of their order, recognizing that psychological problems arising from boredom of monastic life had a negative meaning. impact on "rest, food and entertainment" is better than conventional medical care.

Outdoor exercise seems like perfect way to deal with depressed, indigestible, or nervous brothers who are encouraged to "walk in vineyards, orchards, and by river" and are even allowed to "go off lot." in fields, meadows or forests. Even in nunneries such arrangements were not uncommon: Catorari of Wavell Abbey in Hampshire strikingly describes sanitary reforms introduced by abbot Euphemia in mid-thirteenth century "for worship of God and spiritual and physical well-being of nun."

She applied principles of regime to her community, not only improving hygiene and nursing standards, but also providing resting places for nuns in gardens, vineyards, and bushes so they could exercise regularly and "enjoy clean air." Soon vast grounds of Lantoni Abbey attracted admiring attention of Queen Eleanor of Provence, who apparently followed advice laid out in her personal scheme, and in 1277, living near Gloucester Castle, she found herself in a ditch. The bridge was built. above it, so that she and her companions may roam there for benefit of their health.

Not to mention that many of fears about exercise expressed in regimina have gained acceptance in a rarefied world far beyond royal courts or monastic abbeys, reports Guy Gert. Nathan influenced city magistrates throughout late medieval Europe. In response to alarmingly high death rate of prisoners exposed to "contaminated and spoiled air and other dangerous and terrible diseases" in London's Newgate Prison in early fifteenth century, famous mayor Richard Whittington paid for entire building. .

The new prison, opened in 1432, reflected modern attitudes towards health, especially in regard to value of exercise, "because it was known that underground and dark chambers of fetus" "produce and lead to decay and infection of human body." From now on, prestigious male prisoners were allowed to rest daily in two large, well-ventilated rooms adjoining chapel.

Women served same purpose in a large room adjoining hall, and in return, anyone could enjoy fresh air on sidewalk above main entrance. There is no doubt that link between exercise and dissolution of potentially harmful humoral substances was widely known by this time, as we can see from ubiquity of cattle bait in latermedieval English cities.

Health Preservation in Late Medieval England: An Exercise of Man and Beast

Its popularity is often cited as evidence of a country's penchant for blood sports, though hypothesis that bull-baiting by dogs would improve taste and digestibility of their meat explains why so many city officials severely punished butchers who didn't. Based on aforementioned Galenian concept of physiology, modern medicine believes that "intense heat and movement" of bait animal transforms "completely unhealthy" flesh and "rough blood" into soft and nourishing flesh.

As workers' diets improved after Black Death, number of complaints received by butchers for not baiting bulls before slaughter has increased exponentially. From Bristol to Beverley, from Yarmouth to Chester, local courts were quick to take action against offenders allegedly dealing in substandard meat. While Ipswich jury reported only two breaches of relevant ordinance in 1438, there were five in 1465, eight in 1471 and no fewer than eighteen in 1484.

In early Tudors, enforcement of law was enforced by a series of edicts: head of butcher's trade and "bull" swore an oath "never to kill a bull or sell its meat until it is slaughtered." streets after each mayoral election, this decision is repeated. Bulls are not only animals whose last hours of life are marked by rigorous application of theories about transformative power of exercise.

Aldobrandino from Siena warns that domestic pigs are colder than wild boars, and that due to extreme cold and humidity, meat of piglets produces a putrid liquid, so only those with a strong character but a strong stomach. heart is safe. However, as his contemporary, encyclopedist Bartholomew Anglicus, pointed out, obvious solution was to reproduce constant movement that made wild boar more attractive and safer. Thus, he points out: “Tame Boredom by Beth Strongridge, Itchaid and Itjid, and Ebert. Ah, here Fleischer could be Strong Moinger. More prone and rebellious secondary reason."

Health Preservation in Late Medieval England: An Exercise of Man and Beast

The author argues that it is not surprising that this belief persisted into early modern period, as Andrew Weir notes that persistent assumptions of a general relationship "between all parts of organic and inorganic world" imply that ten writers of sixth century " applied certain ideas, such as usefulness of movement, to various objects and living beings."

Few of these various "objects" seem to need more exercise than politics of body, whose survival requires as careful management of unnatural as of individual, living components. The long association between idleness, vagrancy, and disease that developed after Black Death clearly influenced agenda that humanist reformers supported on eve of dissolution of monasteries.

It is not hard to see how fears of ill effects of inertia crept into advice literature offering guidance to Sir Thomas Elliott's young gentlemen who were destined to assume leadership positions in Tudor dynasty, titled "To Enact and Enforce Strict Labor Laws". Thus, for example, chapter on physical exercise in The Healthy Bruylie (1547) by physician and precaalist Andrew Burd is devoted almost entirely to duties of a parent, “referring them to his family or to his guardianship. Give them right or dominion to make them natural.

A year later, Sir William Forrester's version of Order of Secrets, dedicated to protector of England, Edward, Duke of Somerset, took on a harsher tone. For monarch, he urged, “too disgusting is this Hydea snake, wow, lurking in corners like a peasant plague, and in this tense political climate, careful management of unnatural personalities becomes at same time a matter of personal well-being, has also become public knowledge.

This shift in emphasis is yet another exciting example of regime's adaptability in face of social and religious change, while reflecting extent to which health ideas have become part of people's intellectual baggage. ruling elite. Faith Wallis describes medieval regimes as a vehicle for widespread dissemination of Galenian ideas about human body, which eventually reached status of a secular code of ethics.

His teachings went far beyond mere advice on good health, "quietly acquiring a certain authority" in public and private spheres, with result that adherence to his fundamental principles became a signal of "honesty and respectability", while those who deliberately ignoring them seems to threaten cohesion of entire political establishment. Seen in this light, alleged benefits of movement carry considerable moral weight, as "Herter's help and Idelnis's enemy".

Furthermore, the pursuit of physical fitness is a desirable goal in itself and can contribute to andwhether to encourage spiritual development, which further enhances power of these ideas. The Pilgrim guidebook, erroneously believed to have been written for Emperor Frederick II in 1227 but almost certainly much later, emphasizes this by identifying three closely related types of movement. soul and union of both through writing or reading of these documents.

As they climbed ropes and lifted their weights, Canon St. Bartholomew must have been preparing for something higher, at least that's what author of Regemina must have hoped for.

Health Preservation in Late Medieval England: An Exercise of Man and Beast


Bock named Gurnur, Sir Thomas Elliot

The Diet and Doctrine of Plague by John Lydgate

Song of Chase - Gaston Pheebs, Count of Foix

Andrew Boulder "Healthy Blue Ridge"

Sir William Forrester's Secret Order

Informed consent past and present — based on a new interpretation of Collected Works of Hippocrates. Xiao Liuzhen

Founder of Western Medicine - Hippocrates Liu Jiuzhu, Song Zhiqi

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