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Medicine, trade and empire : Garcia de Orta's Colloquies on the simples and drugs of India (1563) in context / edited by Palmira Fontes da Costa, Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Portugal.

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About this work


"Garcia de Orta's book, Colloquies on the Simples and Drugs of India (1563) was printed in Goa, the main town and capital of the Portuguese empire in the East. A Portuguese physician of Jewish ancestry, Orta lived in Goa for almost thirty years. The port city was an important but remote territory in the Portuguese empire, occupying a prominent role in the circuit of trade and exchange of goods such as botanical simples, drugs and spices. Orta's Colloquies presents fifty-nine dialogues concerning more than eighty different drugs, fruits, spices, minerals and medical preparations, all of them either native to India or observed in use there during the author's time in the territory. The book had a market in Asia but was particularly valuable to a European audience, circulating widely in Portugal and Spain, as well as providing the basis for adaptations, commentaries and editions in various languages"--Provided by publisher.


Farnham, Surrey, England : Ashgate, [2015]

Physical description

xxii, 279 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm.

Bibliographic information

Includes bibliographical references and index.


Introduction / Palmira Fontes da Costa -- Garcia de Orta in the context of the Sephardic diaspora / Jon Arrizabalaga -- Locating Garcia de Orta in the port city of Goa and the Indian Ocean world / Michael N. Pearson -- Garcia de Orta's Colloquies : context and afterlife of a dialogue / Ines G. Zupanov -- A "pleasant banquet of words" : therapeutic virtues and alimentary consumption in Garcia de Orta's Colloquies on the simples and drugs of India / Inês de Ornellas e Castro -- Between science and philology : taxonomy of errors in Orta's Colloquies / Isabel Soler and Juan Pimentel -- Cultures of inquiry, myths of empire : natural history in colonial Goa / Hugh Cagle -- Trading in medical simples and developing the new science : Garcia de Orta and his contemporaries / Harold J. Cook -- Garcia de Orta and Amato Lusitano's views on materia medica : a comparative perspective / António Manuel Lopes Andrade -- Figuring exotic nature in sixteenth-century Europe : Garcia de Orta and Clusius / Florike Egmond -- East Indies, West Indies : Garcia de Orta and the Spanish treatises on exotic materia medica / Jose Pardo Tomás -- "Enduring echoes of Garcia de Orta" : the Royal Hospital gardens in Goa and evolving hybridization in Portuguese colonial medical culture / Timothy D. Walker -- Identity and the construction of memory in representations of Garcia de Orta / Palmira Fontes da Costa -- Afterword / Andrew Cunningham -- .


  • English

Where to find it

  • LocationStatus
    History of Medicine


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  • 9781472431233
  • 1472431235