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Theophrastus followed Aristotle as head of the Lyceum and established the basic concepts of botanical science, collecting data from as far as India. Democritus, early in the century, had described the universe as being composed of atoms (indivisible particles incapable of destruction) and a vacuum. This theory was rejected by Aristotle but was to be emphasized again in the 1st century B.C. by Lucretium.

Hippocrates also lived well into this century. He described a mumps epidemic and some three and four day fevers which may have been tertian and quartan malaria. Other diseases described suggest diphtheria and either tuberculosis or influenza. Nothing was mentioned that suggested small-pox, measles or plague at that time. Whether all the teachings that we have come to accept as Hippocratic writings are actually the work of one man, or many, is not known. There were simultaneously great medical centers on Cos and on the Asia Minor mainland at Cnidos and the final collections of "Hippocratic" writings at the great library at Alexandria in the last part of this century may have actually been contributions from many Greek physicians. Injuries to bone and joints made up a large part of medical practice and manipulations to reduce fractures and dislocations were sophisticated and sometimes associated with very complex bandaging and mechanical devices. The cautery was used and there was extensive use of minor surgical procedures for tumors, fistulas, ulcers and hemorrhoids. The juice of the opium poppy and of the mandragora

This is hyoscyamus (also scopolamine), an ingredient of "twilight sleep"
was available for anesthesia and pain relief . Books numbering seventy-two and treatises at about fifty-nine have been credited to Hippocrates. Case histories of some diseases are superb, but the anatomy, physiology and therapy, of course, was of ten poor and the specific diagnosis of any disease was seldom given. The ethics, conduct and appearance of the physician was emphasized. (Ref. 229 , 125 , 140 )

Of incidental interest is the fact that it was not until this century that the new raised wheat bread from Egypt became popular in Greece. (Ref. 211 ) The last third of the century saw the affairs of Greece subjected to the domination of their Macedonian neighbors - originally enemies and then allies. This situation will be discussed at greater length in the next section.

Upper balkans

The Macedonians, occupying most of the area we know as Yugoslavia and Bulgaria, were kin to the Greeks and their language was almost Greek, but they were more purely Nordic than any people to the south and their appearances and customs were similar to the wild Celts of the period. Philip II, who became Macedonian king in 359 B.C. by simply seizing the throne after he had been appointed regent for his nephew, was a leader-king of the ancient Nordic-Aryan type. Having previously been held hostage for a short time in Thebes, he had gained much knowledge of the Greeks and he immediately developed an army trained in the effective Theban phalanx formation and proceeded to enlarge his kingdom to the north by subduing the Thracians with their gold mines of Mount Pangaion and then east and south to the upper part of the Aegean Sea. In spite of drunkenness and other personal vices, he was probably the best educated man of his time and with his son's tutor, Aristotle; it was he who planned most of the greatness that his son Alexander achieved. After he gained an Aegean coastline and the Thracian gold he soon conquered the coastline of Thessaly. Although there was much bickering and changes of alliances in Greece the main obstacle to Philip's control of the entire peninsula was always Athens, where Demosthenes constantly used his oratorical abilities to denounce him. His troops finally defeated an Athenian coalition, however, in 338 B.C. at Chaeronea in Boeotia. Subsequently, at a congress of Greek states Philip was elected, or at least recognized, as Captain-General of all the Greeks for an all-out war against the old enemy, Persia. Thus Macedonia rose to political importance by assimilating aspects of Hellenism. (Ref. 28 , 72 , 179 )

Questions & Answers

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Source:  OpenStax, A comprehensive outline of world history. OpenStax CNX. Nov 30, 2009 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col10595/1.3
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