Medicine, Trade and Empire: Garcia de Orta's Colloquies on the Simples and Drugs of India (1563) in Context

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Professor Palmira Fontes da Costa
Ashgate Publishing, Ltd., Jun 28, 2015 - History - 296 pages
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Garcia de Orta’s Colloquies on the Simples and Drugs of India (1563) was printed in Goa, the capital of the Portuguese empire in the East and a port city that occupied a prominent role in the circuit of trade. Orta, a Portuguese physician who lived in Goa for thirty years, presents dialogues concerning more than eighty different drugs, fruits, spices, minerals and medical preparations, all of them native to India or observed in use there. This volume analyses the Colloquies, its history, context and reception, and its value to historians as a symbol of the impact of globalization in a sixteenth-century medical world.

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natural History
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Garcia de Orta and the Spanish
the royal Hospital
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About the author (2015)

Palmira Fontes da Costa holds a PhD in History of Science from the University of Cambridge and is Assistant Professor in Historiography and History of Science at the Universidade Nova de Lisboa (FCT). She is also a Member of the Interuniversitary Centre of History of Science and Technology (CIUHCT, Lisbon). Her areas of expertise are the history of medicine and the history of natural history during the early modern period. She is the author of The Singular and the Making of Knowledge at the Royal Society of London in the Eighteenth Century, 2009 and, among others, the editor, of Percursos na História do Livro Médico 1450-1800, 2011 (edited with A. Cardoso) and O Corpo Insólito: Dissertações sobre Monstros no Portugal do século XVIII, 2005.

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