Troels Pank Arbøll

Troels Pank Arbøll

Assistant professor

Current research

As an Assyriologist working with the history of medicine, I primarily publish and study cuneiform texts with medical diagnoses, prescriptions, descriptions of plants, and healing rituals to gain a deeper understanding of ancient medical knowledge and practices. In my monograph Medicine in Ancient Assur from 2020 (available with open access) I provided the first study of the career of a single healer from the 7th century BCE by outlining his training and practice. Furthermore, I have produced a range of articles examining the reality behind medical ingredients, zoonosis, contagion and epidemics, as well as the iconography of demons and animals. I also discovered the first known illustration of a demon of epilepsy! My research combines traditional and new approaches to the study of ancient Mesopotamian medicine in order to increase the temporal depth of humanity’s medical history while broadening our understanding of early medical practices and knowledge production.

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