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Distributed for Brigham Young University

On Poisons and the Protection against Lethal Drugs

A Parallel Arabic-English Edition

Edited, translated, and annotated by Gerrit Bos, along with critical editions of Hebrew and Latin; medieval translations by Gerrit Bos and Michael R. McVaugh

Written in 1199 at the request of al-Qadi al-Fadil, the famous counselor and secretary to Saladin, On Poisons and the Protection against Lethal Drugs is distinguished rabbi Moses Maimonides’ guide to emergency first aid and readily available antidotes. This treatise—assembled from the existing medical literature as well as Maimonides’ own practice—proved highly influential amongst scholars and laypersons in both Jewish and non-Jewish circles alike.

Although On Poisons survives in several Arabic and Judeo-Arabic manuscripts, this is the first finished critical edition of the Arabic. The volume also includes critical editions of the medieval Hebrew and Latin translations and a glossary of material medica and technical terms. It will be essential for the shelves of scholars interested in Maimonides and medieval medicine.

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Table of Contents

Sigla and Abbreviations for the Arabic-English and Hebrew Texts

Sigla and Abbreviations for the Latin Texts



Translator’s Introduction

The Arabic Text of On Poisons

The Hebrew Translations of On Poisons


Introduction to the Latin Translations of Maimonides’ Treatise on Poisons (De Venenis)

. . .

On Poisons and the Protection against Lethal Drugs

. . .


The Hebrew Translation by Moses ben Samuel ibn Tibbon

The Anonymous Hebrew Translation

. . .

The Latin Translation by Armengaud Blaise

The Latin Translation by Giovanni da Capua

The Anonymous Vatican Latin Translation

. . .

Glossary of Technical Terms and Materia Medica

Index to Ibn Tibbon’s Terms in the Glossary

Index to Zerahyah’s Terms in the Glossary

Notes to the Introductions and English Translation


Translations and Editions of Works by or Attributed to Moses Maimonides

General Bibliography

Latin Indexes

Index to Armengaud Blaise’s Translation

Index to Giovanni da Capua’s Translation

Index to Anonymous Vatican Translation

Subject Index to the English Translation

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