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DEKKERS, Frederick (1644-1720)

Exercitationes practicæ circa medendi methodum, Auctoritate, Ratione, Observationibusve plurimis confirmatæ ac Figuris illustratæ. Cum capitum, sectionum, ut & rerum, morborum ac medicamentorum indice. Editio altera priori duplò auctior.
Lugduni Batavorum, apud Jordanum Luchtmans, Cornelium Boutesteyn, 1694.

Second edition of Dekkers' Exercitationes ('Practical Exercises in Methods of Treatment’), a curious work with some remarkable as well as unusually fine and instructive plates, showing cupping, the treatment of dropsy by trapping the abdomen, etc. The first edition appeared in 1673. The eight chapters are arranged, not according to disease, but according to the remedies employed. It went through several editions in Latin, Dutch and French. In Chapter V (De medicamentis purgantibus) Dekkers describes the effect of heat and acetic acid on certain types of urine and gives the first description of albumin in the urine. The frontispiece in this second edition is showing a physician with his healing wand among the sick, many of whose ailments the artist has depicted with startling accuracy. This picture also serves as frontispiece in Major’s Classic Descriptions of Disease. For further description of this picture see Major or the enlargement of our thumbnail of that plate.

Collation: Pp (16), 722, (28), (1) errata. With engraved title page and 21 engraved plates.

Binding: Contemporary vellum.

Provenance: Signature and note: "A. Holtsbom, Emptg Leidæ 1703 24 Novbr" in the lower margin of the title leaf. Andreas Holtzbom (1670-1711) was a pupil of Olof Rudbeck the Elder, and accompanied Olof Rudbeck the Younger on his tour to Lapland in 1695. He was a most skilful artist and is responsible for many of the fine plates of birds and plants in Campus Elysii and The Book of Birds by the Rudbecks. At the time he purchased the book in Leyden he studied in Holland, where he took his medical degree. Back home he was appointed provincial physician in Nyköping. Signature on end papers "L. Rydberg".

References: Garrison-Morton 4161 (first ed. 1673); Major, Classic Descriptions of Disease (3rd ed. 1965), frontispiece and pp 527-28; Dock, 'Some Early Observers of Albuminaria’ in Annals of Medical History, IV, 1922, pp 287-90. Waller 2331 (with the date 1695 and who also calls for a portrait).

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