This is the tale of a chinese language surgeon, his booklet, and the creatures that danced inside its pages. The Monkey and the Inkpot introduces ordinary heritage in sixteenth-century China throughout the iconic Bencao gangmu (Systematic materia medica) of Li Shizhen (1518–1593).
The encyclopedic Bencao gangmu is generally lauded as a vintage embodiment of pre-modern chinese language scientific inspiration. within the first book-length examine in English of Li’s textual content, Carla Nappi unearths a “cabinet of curiosities” of gem stones, beasts, and oddities whose writer used to be dedicated to utilizing ordinary heritage to steer the applying of common and synthetic gadgets as clinical medicines. Nappi examines the making of proof and weighing of proof in a major assortment the place stories of wildmen and dragons have been recorded along recipes for ginseng and peonies.
Nappi demanding situations the belief of a monolithic culture of chinese language natural drugs via exhibiting the significance of discussion and confrontation in early smooth scholarly and clinical tradition. The Monkey and the Inkpot additionally illuminates the fashionable destiny of a ebook that keeps to form replacement therapeutic practices, international pharmaceutical markets, and chinese language culture.