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June 2019

Sudhoffs Arch Z Wissenschaftsgesch. 1995 ; 79(2): 173-92.

[The German addendum to Hildegard von Bingen's 'Liber simplicis medicinae' in Codex 6952 of the Bibliothèque Nationale in Paris (fol. 232v-238v)]

Adamson MW.

Department Modern Languages and Literatures, University of Western Ontario, London, Canada.

The article contains an analysis and edition of the German appendix to Hildegard of Bingen's 'Liber simplicis medicinae' ('LSM', also known as 'Physica') in Codex 6952 of the Bibliothèque Nationale in Paris. Surprisingly, the German text is not based on the preceding Latin treatise, but on another unknown version of the 'LSM' which is closer to the archetype. The appendix thus has to be regarded as a new manuscript find, which also contains material found only in Hildegard's 'Liber compositae medicinae' ('LCM', also known as 'Causae et Curae'). This suggests that the translator had access to both texts, or that both once circulated as one treatise. In the reception of Hildegard's work, the 13-page German appendix is unique in that Hildegard's description of nature is transformed into three different types of medical writing: 1) a herbal, 2) a catalogue of diseases from head to toe and their remedies, and 3) a dietetic list of foodstuffs. To illustrate the technique applied by the compiler/translator, the edition of the Paris-appendix identifies all the quotes from the 'LSM' and 'LCM' which have so far been uncovered.


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