“Pour que tu puisses goûter toute la richesse du fruit...”: une analyse exploratoire des index des Consilia medicinalia de Baillou

Jean-Marc Mandosio


The seventeenth-century editor of Baillou’s three books of Consilia medicinalia, Jacques Thevart, boasted about the richness and utility of the indexes he had added to this work. The article shows that the index of volume I (1635) was probably elaborated by Baillou, and that the index of volume III (1649) was made by the famous Parisian physician Guy Patin, as he himself claimed. The method of analysis presented here aims to demonstrate that the study of indexes, neglected by modern scholars, can be a very useful device if one wishes to have a better understanding of what the authors and the editors of ancient medical and scientific works considered to be their audience’s main interests. As a reading guide, the indexes direct readers, sometimes to our surprise, towards subject matter which might otherwise remain hidden in such large and miscellaneous works as the Consilia medicinalia.


Medical books (17th century); Patin Guy; Thevard Jacques

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