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Translation of De Plantis Aegypti

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De Plantis Aegypti is a medical botany text from 1592, written by Prospero Alpini in Latin. In this text, Alpini details a variety of plants native and grown in Egypt, how they are grown, how they are processed, what they

De Plantis Aegypti is a medical botany text from 1592, written by Prospero Alpini in Latin. In this text, Alpini details a variety of plants native and grown in Egypt, how they are grown, how they are processed, what they look like, and what if any edible and medical uses are documented. This project focused on transcribing and editing the Latin text, translating the Latin text into English, and comparing the medical claims to the modern scientific literature. This is the first translation of this text into English or any other language. Alpini also wrote two other books, which also have never been translated. The intended goal was to demonstrate that renaissance scholars understood medicine well, if not the mechanisms through which those medicines worked. After analyzing the modern scientific literature on the plants mentioned within the text, it was found that every medical use referenced in the text was either directly supported, indirectly supported, or there was no data from the literature. In other words, none of the medical uses were found to be disproved. On the other hand, quite a few of the plants actually had similar efficacies as modern pharmaceuticals. In addition to the notes on the modern science, there are also quite a few notes based on the grammar and the orthography of the text. This project is but a sampling of the plants mentioned De Plantis Aegypti, there are dozens more, which I plan on translating and doing a similar analysis on at a later date.

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2016-05

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An Exploration of Renaissance Self-fashioning through Clothing

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A look into the historical significance of clothing and clothing construction to self-fashioning.

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2013-05