DIE PROBLEMATIK DER FELDMEDIZIN UNGARNS DER FRÜHEN NEUZEIT
Issues of the battlefield medicine in Hungary of the early modern era
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The task of military surgery was fulfilled by experts who practiced their job in guild frameworks: surgeons, leeches in Europe and Hungary in the early modern period. However, surgeon guilds limited the number of their members. Furthermore, these guild healers also operated in towns and in peace time, and were not prepared for the challenges generated by the spread of mass militaries. The number of healers was limited by the operational principles of the armies themselves. The profession of doctor strictly separated from the profession of soldier: the armies employed doctors and surgeons, perhaps pharmacists in commissioned officer ranks very rarely. The institution of military surgeon, professional military leech became widespread only by the end of the 18th century. In contrast to the views conceived in earlier professional literature, the present research paper shows that the leaders of the Habsburg state and military (for example, Lazarus von Schwendi, Montecuccoli, Miklós Zrínyi, or Prince of Transylvania Ferenc II Rákóczi) all sensed these problems, but the organizational structure, the infrastructure, logistics and the level of supply did not make it possible to solve them.
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