Research Project


Is prevention better than cure? The place of hemerology within Mesopotamian medicine

Vérène Chalendar

Mesopotamians healers' knowledge rested on a solid cultural background, and their practice required an awareness of divination and hemerology, among other things but, even nowadays, the definition of hemerology remains vague. It is simultaneously ubiquitous and elusive in the Mesopotamian intellectual conception, which is why this research aims to specify the definition of hemerological practices as part of the medical section of the cuneiform corpus.
This project consists of two parts. The first part describes my personal research, which focuses on studying the place of hemerology within Mesopotamian medicine, while the second part entails the organization of an interdisciplinary and international conference entitled What is hemerology? Definition, sources, functions. This colloquium will take place in Erlangen, at the end of 2019, and I will assist L. Marti (Research Fellow, CNRS) at the start of this project. The integration of this project within the Friedrich-Alexander University collaborative program will foster a dialog between civilizations. It hopes to enhance the knowledge of hemerology and medicine in general by meeting the challenges posed by our respective corpora, thanks to an interdisciplinary think tank.

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