Wellness Database

Health tips for laypeople have been one of my minor journalistic lines of business, so I was delighted to see a manuscript of the Tacuinum Sanitatis arrive online in full color this week on the Vatican Library portal. Vat.lat.2427 could be described as a wellness database, with a 380-row lookup table to check compatibility between foods and ailments.

It did not serve to educate doctors, but rather to inform wealthy patients who desired to second-guess their doctors. It is based on the Taqwīm as‑siḥḥah تقويم الصحة ("Maintenance of Health"), an 11th-century Arab medical treatise by a Christian doctor of Baghdad, Ibn Butlan. See Wikipedia.

This and its companion codex Vat.lat.2426 (both date from the 14th century) arrange all this tabular material in pretty red-and-blue lattices:

This presentation seems to pre-date the absolute de-luxe versions that started coming out in Italy in about 1380 with lushly painted miniatures of country life, gardens and stately homes, the lifestyle edition so to speak.

In all there are 41 new manuscripts at the Library portal:
  1. Barb.lat.2653,
  2. Barb.lat.2814, diary 1582-89
  3. Reg.lat.77,
  4. Reg.lat.78,
  5. Reg.lat.104, Petrus Lombardus, Glossae continuae. eTK makes a mistake in indicating this codex contains Gynaecia, incipit Cum in Alexandria sum certatus cum auctoritatibus, at ff. 94v-99v. Reader @monicaMedHist says this is probably an error in eTK for Reg. lat. 1004, which does indeed have a text on women's medicine (Genecia) attributed to "Actius Justius."
  6. Reg.lat.1561,
  7. Reg.lat.1636,
  8. Urb.lat.122,
  9. Urb.lat.190,
  10. Vat.lat.1136,
  11. Vat.lat.1313,
  12. Vat.lat.2079,
  13. Vat.lat.2216,
  14. Vat.lat.2318,
  15. Vat.lat.2319,
  16. Vat.lat.2384 (Upgraded to HQ), medieval Latin Galen. Note the much earlier ms used for an endpaper
  17. Vat.lat.2390,
  18. Vat.lat.2417, Creavit deus ex concavitatibus cordis sinistram; by Avicenna. See eTK
  19. Vat.lat.2427 (Upgraded to HQ), Tacuinum Sanitatis, popular medieval health guide (above).
  20. Vat.lat.2433,
  21. Vat.lat.2438,
  22. Vat.lat.2447,
  23. Vat.lat.2449, Cum quidem iam pervenimus ad expositionem egritudinum (14c); De egritudinibus. See eTK
  24. Vat.lat.2495,
  25. Vat.lat.2548 (Upgraded to HQ), Bernardus Compostelanus, m. 1267 Apparatus in Decretales, 14th-century copy
  26. Vat.lat.2572,
  27. Vat.lat.2576,
  28. Vat.lat.2581,
  29. Vat.lat.2584,
  30. Vat.lat.2585,
  31. Vat.lat.2586,
  32. Vat.lat.2588,
  33. Vat.lat.2590,
  34. Vat.lat.2615,
  35. Vat.lat.2625 (Upgraded to HQ), Bartolus de Saxoferrato
  36. Vat.lat.2673,
  37. Vat.lat.2676,
  38. Vat.lat.2692, 13th-century law textbook which contains an analysis of the Iuris Canonici. For diagram history this is interesting, as fol. 50r includes a passage explaining the use of an arbor juris in working out degrees of kinship. Mentioned by Schadt in his Darstellungen der Arbores Consanguinatis.
  39. Vat.lat.2733,
  40. Vat.lat.5256 (Upgraded to HQ), Odorico da Pordonone, in Italian
  41. Vat.lat.13358,
This is Piggin's Unofficial List number 148. Thanks to @gundormr for harvesting. If you have corrections or additions, please use the comments box below. Follow me on Twitter (@JBPiggin) for news of more additions to DigiVatLib.

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