Jacques Houllier

Jacques Houllier

Jacques Houllier ( Jacobus Hollerius Stampani, 1504? -1562)

De morborum internorum curatione (1572). (Treatment of internal diseases).

Jacques Houllier was born in Étampes, France most likely in 1504?, although the exact date is questioned. Because of his place of birth his Latinized name was Jacobus Hollerius Stampani.
He studied at the University of Paris and obtained his medical degree in 1536. He was in Paris at the same time Vesalius was also studying with Jacques Dubois (Jacobus Sylvius), the noted Galenic anatomist. Unlike Vesalius that obtained his medical degree in 1537 and left for Padua, Houllier became Professor of Medicine in Paris in 1538. Houllier became dean of the medical school in 1546-47.

Paris was a very conservative bastion of medicine, upholding Galenic thought, unlike Vesalius in Padua. In fact, the polemic between Sylvius and Vesalius were quite open. Houllier not only defended Galen and Hippocrates, he became one of the most influential interpreters and translators of the work of Hippocrates. A noted scholar and translator and interpreter of Hippocrates, Houllier was a renowned physician in his own right. In 1543, he published Ad Libros Galeni de compositione medicamentorum secundum locos periochæ octo, a translation and annotation of Galenic treatments.

His interpretation and annotations of Hippocrates are among the most respected. In 1576 his Magni Hippocratis Coaca Præsagia was published in 1576 in Lyon, a copy of which was recently purchased for our collection. The first Latin translation of Hippocrates’ work appeared in 1525. Subsequent translations and editions of the Corpus Hippocraticus were improvements of previous versions. But there were two editions in particular that stood the test of time and one of them is Houllier’s. That work covers The Coan Prenotions, and it is the volume in our collection. As “Heirs of Hippocrates” describes: Houllier, a celebrated French physician was a leader in France of the reaction against Galen and the return to Hippocratic principles”.

De morborum internorum curatione is an important compilation of treatments for internal diseases known at the end of the 16th century France. This volume was published five years after Houllier’s death. It contains description of the plague, surgical treatments and medications of general use.

Digital Version

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