The contribution of Morgagni to medical science must be regarded as in some respects the counterpart of Sydenham's.
Even yet medical science has not determined the effect upon the human system of water highly charged with bacteria which are not known to be individually pathogenic. In the case of the bacilli of typhoid and cholera, we know the direct effect; but apart altogether from the presence of such specific poisons, polluted water is undoubtedly injurious.
He found the medical profession of his time split up into a number of sects, medical science confounded under a multitude of dogmatic systems, the social status and moral integrity of physicians degraded.
Prematurely born at Buda on the ist of July 1506, it required all the resources of medical science to keep the sickly child alive, yet he developed so precociously that at the age of thirteen he was well bearded and moustached, while at eighteen his hair was silvery white.
Himself well trained in the learning and medical science of the day, he despised and trampled upon all traditional and authoritative teachings.
Even when Arabian medicine gave way before the direct teaching of the Greek authors rescued from neglect, the authority of Galen was increased instead of being diminished; and he assumed a position of autocracy in medical science which was only slowly undermined by the growth of modern science in the 17th and 18th centuries.
The whole body of medical literature belonging to the Hippocratic and Alexandrian times is ably summarized, and a knowledge of the state of medical science up to and during the times of the author is thus conveyed to us which can be obtained from no other source.
When Lotze published these works, medical science was still much under the influence of Schelling's philosophy of nature.
The methodic school lasted certainly for some centuries, and influenced the revival of medical science in the middle ages, though overshadowed by the greater reputation of Galen.
As by the discovery of stethoscopy by Laennec a new field of medical science and art was opened up, so, more recently, inventions of other new methods of investigation in medicine have opened to us other fields of little less interest and importance.