On Airs, Waters, and Places
Whoever wishes to investigate medicine properly, should proceed thus:
in the first place to consider the seasons of the year, and what effects
each of them produces (for they are not at all alike, but differ much
from themselves in regard to their changes).
|The part in parenthesis is rather obscure. In the old French translation it is rendered thus: "Elles sont tres differentes entre elles par leur nature, et il arrive d'ailleurs une infinite de changemens qui sont tous divers." On these changes, see Aphor. iii., 2-15.|
Then the winds, the hot
and the cold, especially such as are common to all countries, and
then such as are peculiar to each locality. We must also consider
the qualities of the waters, for as they differ from one another in
taste and weight, so also do they differ much in their qualities.
In the same manner, when one comes into a city to which he is a stranger,
he ought to consider its situation, how it lies as to the winds and
the rising of the sun; for its influence is not the same whether it
lies to the north or the south, to the rising or to the setting sun.
These things one ought to consider most attentively, and concerning
the waters which the inhabitants use, whether they be marshy and soft,
or hard, and running from elevated and rocky situations, and then
if saltish and unfit for cooking; and the ground, whether it be naked
and deficient in water, or wooded and well watered, and whether it
lies in a hollow, confined situation, or is elevated and cold; and
the mode in which the inhabitants live, and what are their pursuits,
whether they are fond of drinking and eating to excess, and given
to indolence, or are fond of exercise and labor, and not given to
excess in eating and drinking.