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By Emily Booth

Walter Charleton (1619-1707) has been commonly depicted as a ordinary thinker whose highbrow profession reflected the highbrow ferment of the ‘scientific revolution’. rather than viewing him as a barometer of highbrow swap, I research the formerly unexplored query of his identification as a doctor. reading 3 of his vernacular scientific texts, this quantity considers Charleton’s innovations on anatomy, body structure and the tools through which he sought to appreciate the invisible methods of the physique. even supposing interested in many empirical investigations in the Royal Society, he didn't supply epistemic primacy to experimental findings, nor did he intentionally determine himself with the empirical equipment linked to the ‘new science’. as a substitute Charleton awarded himself as a scholarly eclectic, following a classical version of the self. Physicians had to recommend either historic and sleek experts, that allows you to allure and keep sufferers. I argue that Charleton’s conditions as a training health care provider ended in the development of an id at variance with that commonly linked to traditional philosophers. The insights he can provide us into the realm of 17th century physicians are hugely major and totally attention-grabbing

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Extra info for A Subtle and Mysterious Machine: The Medical World of Walter Charleton (1619-1707)

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Frank, Oxford Physiologists, p. 25 Munk, Roll, vol. 1, p. 391. See also Annals, 5 December 1706. The only one remaining was John Crewe (1633—1722). Cook, Trials, p. 113. 28 CHAPTER I scientific knowledge such as Steven Shapin. Instead his medical writings reveal a quite different set of determinants of identity, peculiar to his status as a professional physician, within which eclecticism was central. The second chapter reviews the literature on Charleton. Across generations of shifting historiographical emphasis, the basic characterisation of him, as a barometer of contemporary thought, has remained unaltered.

Webster, Great Instauration, pp. 278-9. Rattansi, ‘Puritan Revolution’, p. 31. For this he is attacked by Mulligan, ‘Right reason’. Sharp, ‘Early Life’, p. 312. Sharp, ‘Early Life’, p. 339. Sharp, ‘Early Life’, p. 339. 38 CHAPTER II Theodore Brown argues for the necessity of an institutional examination of seventeenth-century natural philosophical debates, as a means of understanding the relationship between mechanical and non-mechanical modes of thought. Brown argues that the relationship between the beliefs expressed and the groups within which individuals wrote is the crucial focus for investigation.

CHAPTER II REWRITING WALTER CHARLETON: PHYSICK AND NATURAL PHILOSOPHY In order to reexamine Charleton, we need to scrutinise some assumptions implicit in existing scholarship on the subject. Specific studies of Charleton are rare. Interest in him seems to have flowered in the 1950s, and is evident in sporadic articles through the 1960s and 1970s. Few historians have studied his full career. 2 A striking similarity among historical accounts of Charleton is the role attributed to the process of ‘scientific revolution’.

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