16th Century

Medicine's Attraction to Magnetism

Medicine's Attraction to Magnetism

These days, there are two brands of advocates for the use of magnetism in the practice of medicine. Some are high tech wizards, expert in  biophysics. The others are charlatans. The charlatans are a hold over from past centuries when magnetism and biology were poorly understood. Two physicians played a prominent role in this story: Gilbert, who was arguably a better scientist that even Roger Bacon, his more famous contemporary; and Mesmer who was, contrary to the reputation of ‘Mesmerism’, not a ‘complete’ charlatan.