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Ancient Roman trepan

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Ancient Roman trepan
Ancient Roman trepan

Ancient Roman trepan – used in Roman medicine to drill a circular hole in bone or other tissue by pressing and twisting. The object is made of bronze.

Titus Livius tells how the Egyptian king Ptolemy VI in 145 BCE was wounded in battle and surgery was undertaken on his head. The trepanation, however, ended with the death of the ruler, which was probably the norm in the ancient world.

Sources
  • Titus Livius, Periochae, 52.12

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