AMONG ancient writers Erotian is the only one
who expressly ascribes this little treatise to Hippocrates
himself. Modern critics generally regard it as
old, but as not by Hippocrates, the chief exception
being Littré. Adams is uncertain, but is inclined to
think that Hippocrates was not the author.
Thus the external evidence in support of the view
that Hippocrates was the author of this treatise is very
slight indeed. The internal evidence is considerably
(1) The writer, like Hippocrates,
|By "Hippocrates" is meant the
writer of Prognostic,
of Regimen in Acute Diseases, and of Epidemics, I., III.
health is caused by a "coction" of the "humours."
(2) He recognises the importance of "critical"
days in an illness.
(3) He holds that medical science is founded on
observation and reasoning, not on speculation.
(4) He attaches great importance to the use of
"slops" of various degrees of consistency.
All these doctrines are in conformity with the
views expounded in the works assigned to Hippocrates.
On the other hand, no stress is laid upon
prognosis, which Hippocrates considered of primary
importance. Again, it would be impossible to show
from the works of Hippocrates that the father of