History of Medicine
Disease Man and Disease Horse
A common chart from medieval and Renaissance medical texts is “Disease Man,” wherein the diseases that can affect different parts of the body are laid out schematically around the body. Horse veterinarians adopted this chart, creating a “Disease Horse”; this chart often served as an index to the book, stating the page on which a particular horse disease could be found.
Astrology and Health
An important ingredient to medieval and Renaissance human healing was Astrology, whereby the influence of the stars on the body was studied and carefully charted. Veterinarians did the same with horses. In these two charts, the signs of the zodiac are associated with different parts of the body: for example, don’t treat the head while Aries is in the sky.
Bloodletting and the Four Humors
Central to early theories of human health was keeping the four humors (blood, bile, black bile, and phlegm) in balance, which involved the practice of bloodletting. Veterinarians followed suit and created bloodletting charts and systems which were similar to those created for human healing.