Chap. III.

Of Pleurisies.

THAT Pleurisies[1] are only on the left side, is a popular Tenent not only absurd but dangerous. From the misapprehension hereof, men omitting the opportunity of remedies, which otherwise they would not neglect. Chiefly occasioned by the ignorance of Anatomie and the extent of the part affected; which in an exquisite[2] Pleurisie is determined to be the skin or membrane which investeth the Ribs, for so it is defined, Inflammatio membranæ costas succingentis; An Inflammation, either simple, consisting only of an hot and sanguineous affluxion; or else denominable from other humours, according to the predominancy of melancholy, flegm, or choler. The membrane thus inflamed, is properly called Pleura; from whence the disease hath its name; and this investeth not only one side, but overspreadeth the cavity of the chest, and affordeth a common coat unto the parts contained therein.

Now therefore the Pleura being common unto both sides, it is not reasonable to confine the inflammation unto one, nor strictly to determine it is alwaies in the side; but sometimes before and behind, that is, inclining to the Spine or Breast-bone; for thither this Coat extendeth; and therefore with equal propriety we may affirm, that ulcers of the lungs, or Apostems of the brain do happen oney in the left side; or that Ruptures are confinable unto one side, whereas the Peritoneum or Rim[3] of the Belly may be broke, or its perforations relaxed in either.


* [My or others' notes are in square brackets]; Browne's marginalia is unmarked; {passages or notes from unpublished material by Browne is in curly braces}.

1 [Pleurisies: 1672 has Plurisies here and in the chapter title (but Pleurisie and Pleura elsewhere in the chapter). 1646 and other editions, Pleurisies.]

2 [exquisite, that is, genuine, as opposed to spurious. The use derives from the Latin rendering of Galen's ἀκριβής, "accurate, exact, genuine, complete".]

3 [1672 has "Rib" here. (1646 rimme)]

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