Tes iatrikes kartos, or, A treatise de morborum capitis essentiis & pronosticis adorned with above three hundred choice and rare observations ...
Bayfield, Robert, b. 1629.
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The Epistle to the Reader.

Courteous Reader,

THis Tractate which I now present unto thee, is the fruit of my spare hours, it having been my recreation, for some time, to read the best Authors which I could meet with; and for the help of my memory, I have collected the choicest Observations, and the most infallible Prognosticks which did oc∣cur, and reduced them under several Heads, distinguished into several Chapters; which I have found very useful, profitable, and plea∣sing unto me; and presuming they may be so to others also, I have now published them to the World, that so they which neither have mo∣ney to buy, nor leisure to read many Volumnes, may find in this little Epitome the choicest, and chiefest things that are contained in them, touching all those Diseases and Symptoms which affect the Head. I have also inserted many Observations of my own, which were never before in Print. Indeed when I consi∣dered Page  [unnumbered] the paucity of Observations, and espe∣cially how immethodically (for the most part) those extant are digested; I thought it might be worth my pains to run through the whole body of Practical Physick in this Method, which affords not only the Definitions, and Prognosticks of Diseases, with select Obser∣vations upon them, but also their Causes, and Diagnostick signs, as will clearly appear to the Observing Reader. Yet when I had finished this Tractate of the Diseases of the Head, I thought it not convenient to proceed any further, but rather to put a stop to my in∣tended purpose, until I saw how this would be resented. There can be no better means, I am sure, to preserve, further, and assist, the practising of Physick, then is the careful and painful penning of it, especially of Observa∣tions: For as Practice is the best and chiefest part of Physick; so is Observation the surest, and most demonstrating part of Practice: Hence it cometh to pass, through the de∣fect of Observations, that so many Prescrip∣tions we meet with in the Works of most Page  [unnumbered] learned Practitioners, fall often short in per∣forming the Cures they promise, and we took them up for; but Observations are the Touch-stone for the trying of what ever is not good, and what current in Physick. I presume that it will be superfluous for me to tell thee, what great benefit thou mayest reap by acquainting thy self with this Tractate; for as Zeuxis, picturing Helen, drew the Liueaments from five of the fairest Virgins of Croton: So this Book (excluding what is mine) is borrowed from the richest treasu∣ries of the best Physitians: And verily, I judge him of too mean capacity for this Art or Science, that cannot by the light of these things proceed into further Particulars, when need requireth.

This I profess, that my care in be∣ginning, continuing, and ending this Work, hath been for the benefit of my Country, that I might help young Students in Physick (as I am one my self) to the attaining of some perfection, not esteeming my pains, but ha∣zarding Page  [unnumbered] my credit: For I am not ignorant, that a large brood of pregnant Wits, fraught∣ed with jeers, (and good ones, as they term them) will snarl, though themselves either cannot, or (be it spoken in the best sence) will not spare time from their pleasures or profits to advantage others. These proud wits and curious heads are so extreamly in love with their own shadows, and do so highly admire their own conceits, that they despise all the understanding and learning of other men. They will whip Homer, as did Zoilus; sift great Hippocrates, as did Thessalus, and lash Seneca, that super-intendent of Wit, Learning, and Judgment, as did Caligula, Agellius, Fabius, and Lipsius himself, his chief Propugner; they have sucked Lami∣a's breasts in Plutarch, who when she sate spinning at home laid her eyes by her in a Basin, but put them into her head when she went abroad: They are as kinde as the Cuckow, which devoureth the Bird that brought her up, and with the male Spider (as Aristotle saith) they eat the prey, but Page  [unnumbered] take no pains. Unwise were I, being empty and barren, if I thought to escape that which Homer, that sweet and sugred Mecaenas of Greece, might in no wise avoid. Simple were I to seek to evade that which the wisest, and Learnedest, Socrates, Architas, and Seneca, could not shun. Zeno the poor Phi∣losopher could resist the violence of the great King Antigonus, and Demosthenes could withstand the force of Philip, and yet neither of them could avoid the snares of those that defamed their Labour, and envied their diligence in Writing, and making of Books. Indeed it is the common doom of all Writers: Scaliger makes Galen fimbri∣am Hippocratis; and Paracelsus will have them both meer Idiots, Infants in Phy∣sick and Philosophie: Yea, Cardan con∣demns them also, for tediousness obscurity, and confusion. If such, and so many fa∣mous men that I could name, have suffered so much, what shall I expect? How shall I that am vix umbra tantae doctrinae, hope to please? For that which is most plea∣sing Page  [unnumbered] to one, is amaracum sui, most harsh to another: Quot homines, tot sententiae, so many men, so many minds; Unusquis{que} abundat sensu suo; and whilst each parti∣cular Party is so affected, how should one give satisfaction to all? How shall I hope to express my self to each mans humor and con∣ceit? Some understand too little, some too much, Qui similiter in legendos libros, atque in salutandos homines irruunt, non cogitantes quales, sed quibus ve∣stibus induti sint, as Austin observes, not regarding what, but who writes. If he be not rich, in great place, polite, and brave, a great Doctor, or full fraught with grand Titles, though never so well qualified, he is a Dunce! but, as Baronius hath it of Cardi∣nal Caraffa's Works; he is a meer Hog that rejects any man pro paupertate suâ▪ Tru∣ly, the malice of men so exceedingly increaseth, that no man, no not the best learned, as you have heard (much less I) can do ought with∣out reproach and slander; yea, and that chief∣ly by men of his own profession: For how Page  [unnumbered] hateful and vile a matter is this, and a plain demonstration of Envie, when one man of Science shall be asked by a stranger, what opi∣nion he hath of another man of Science that he knoweth; he shall answer, he is a good Her∣balist, or he understandeth well the practick part of Physick, I know nothing else of him. They that are perfect in nothing themselves have ever in readiness such disdainful re∣proach to hide their own Ignorance: as though a man being excellent in any one thing, it pro∣ved him to be ignorant in all other. Certainly the remembrance of such disdainful Objecti∣ons (when I had already finished this thing) made me in doubt to put forth this Work; but that my Friends, with whom I conferred my doings, earnestly perswaded me not to regard the rage of Envie, so long as Truth would bear out it self, while Time consumed both Slander and also Envie, the Author of all reproach; And that I should in no case cease to do that should profit many, for the evil of a few; some perhaps will say (to diminish that little honour which I might get by this my Work) Page  [unnumbered] that the Ancients have written the greatest part thereof: But they shall learn from the mouth of this great Oracle, That there is no less wit and understanding required to be able to judge of Sciences formerly written, then to be the first Authors of them. Indeed the An∣cients, whose studious endeavours conspired the subduing of these and other Diseases, have left behinde them most honourable Testimonies of their Labors; yea, and Modern men also have been stirred up to do the like; but some of them with so much tediousness and prolixity, that you may sooner finde your Patient dead, than a remedy in their Writings, which (if my judgment be any thing) are more learned then useful. Besides, though there were many Gi∣ants of old in Physick and Philosophy, yet I say, with Didacus Stella, A Dwarf standing on the shoulders of a Giant may see further then the Giant himself; and it is no greater prejudice for me, to endite after others, then for Aelianus Montaltus, that famous Physiti∣an, to write De Morbis Capitis, after Ja∣son Pratensis, Heurnius, Hildesheim,Page  [unnumbered] &c. Oribasius, Aetius, Avicenna, have all out of Galen, but to their own Method, diverso stilo, non diversâ fide. Yea, I must usurp that of Wecker, è Ter. Nihil dictum quod non fuit dictum prius, Methodus sola artificem ostendit. I gathered my Stones out of many Quarries, but I composed my frame my self: If I have done well, it is that which I desired, but if I have done slenderly, it is that I could attain unto. For my own part, I respect matter, not words; remembring that of Cardanus, Verba pro∣pter res, non res propter verba: and seek∣ing with Seneca, Quid scribam, non quemadmodum, rather what, then how to write: I neglect Phrases, and labour wholly to inform my Readers understanding, not to please his ear; 'tis not my studie, or intent, to compose neatly, which an Orator requires, but to express my self readily and plainly, as it happens: Whether I have attained the mark at which I aimed, or shot wide, I submit my self to thy learned, and favourable Censure: And as for those malicious Calumnies of Rai∣lers, Page  [unnumbered] and Detractors (as the barking of a Dog) I securely contemn them: What thou findest here amiss (except the faults of the Press) I freely confess it mine; yet neither wittingly, nor willingly is it mine; howsoever charge it to mine account, for I was ever of that Fa∣thers minde, which in all his Works and Writings, desired not only pium Lectorem, a courteous Reader of his Labours, but also liberum Correctorem, a free Reprover of his Faults; but so that they do it friend∣ly, to blame in their judgement where it is e∣quity, and not to blaze my faults unto the World, which is a breach of Charity; therefore do thou friendly reckon with me, and I will thankfully satisfie thee, and be sure to remem∣ber, that as it is thy duty to be thankful for the best, so thou oughtest to be charitable in thy censure of the rest. Consider what I say, and the Lord give thee understanding in all things.

Thy Servant in Him, who took upon Him the form of a Servant for us, R. B.