Observations in Surgery, 1740 (London, printed J Hodges)

Guy de Chauliac (a.k.a. Guido or Guigo de Cauliaco (1300 – 1368)


Barthélémy Saviard (1656-1702), translated by J Sparrow (1656-1702)

Barthélémy Saviard (1740). Observations in Surgery: Being a Collection of One Hundred and Twenty-Eight Cases. With particular remarks on each for the improvement of young students.

The first edition volume is a lesser-known surgical text of 128 clinical cases. The last six pages contain medicines and ointments recommended for distemper and burns. Written in French in 1702 (Nouveau recueil d'observations chirurgicales) by Mr. Barthelemy Saviard with help from Jean Devaux, it was subsequently translated into English by J. Sparrow, a British surgeon. 

Barthélémy, born in Marole-sur-Seine, was Chief Surgeon and Operator in Midwifery, a Sworn Surgeon at the Hospital Hotel Dieu in Paris for 17 years, and a Maistre of the Order of St. Comes. He was famous for his skill in the surgical removal of stones (lithotomy). Unfortunately, Saviard published little during his life. 

In Egligny-sur-Seine, with Mr. Etienne Saviard, his brother, who was a priest, he ended his career on August 15, 1702, at 46. Saviard's observations are even more valuable because he avoids lengthy theoretical details and explains the facts with the most incredible precision

Just before his death, the famous Jean Devaux, Chirurgien Jureé, and Prevost of the Faculty of Medicine in Paris helped put Saviard's observations in order in 1702. He chose 128 cases, only the most instructive ones, to which he had remedies. The work, thus written by Jean Devaux, was published under this title: New Collection of Surgical Observations. Paris, 1702. The name Jean Devaux is crucial because he was the person who took under his wings Pierre Fauchard and reviewed the original 1723 version of his Le Chirurgien Dentiste", one of the most critical dental works.

When purchased, it was in worn condition, with front and rear boards detached, with loss to the top edge. It has browning to page edges, sporadic foxing and marking, and loss to rear endpaper. Originally, it was at the Royal College of Surgeons Ireland Library. Andrew I Spielman is restoring the volume.

Editorial notes by Andrew I Spielman.

Digital Version

Digital Version: French