Herophilus was another who studied and practised his trade in Alexander at the time of
Ptolemy. His initial suggestion that the arteries contained blood as opposed to air was widely disregard as even years before Aristotle believed that they contained air.
His biggest claim to fame was his dissection of cadavers (sometimes in public) to prove his theories. Together with Erasistratus he is regarded as a founder of the great medical school of Alexandria.56
The post Hippocratic schools of medicine, which were four in number-
(1) the Dogmatists,
(2) the Empirics,
(3) the Methodists,
(4) the Pneumatists
These occupy perhaps a somewhat unimportant sphere in the history of medicine, but the great Philosophic schools of the Stoics, Epicureans,
Sceptics, and Eclectics which influenced them, and of which, in a sense, they were the practical outcome, are famous through all time. No attempt will be named to describe them or try to explain their points of contact with medicine.
The school of the Dogmatists in its prime synchronized with the decline of Hellenic freedom and with the rise of the Macedonian hegemony. This school received its name from Galen, and, though not very happily chosen, it must be retained for convenience.
If we were to call them “theorists’" we should come nearer to the essential idea which they represented in the ancient world. 57
To the modern mind dogmatism is suggestive of a certain degree of intellectual rigidity and aridity which were certainly not characteristics of this ancient medical school. But they suffered from what Bacon called :
“that first distemper of learning, when men study words and not matter.”58