The Dark Ages
Whilst Edward (then a Prince) was on one of the crusades, one of the members of the Baibars tried to kill him with a poisoned knife. The prince quickly killed his assailant but was wounded in the arm.
Soon after the limb swelled, and the foul-smelling gangrenes flesh grew black. His personal physicians were at a loss on what to do, andthey lost all hope of saving this young Princes life.
However there was a surgeon who name to this day remains unknown, he approached the wound in very much the same way as a surgeon would today and cut away the blackened tissue cleaned up the wound and dressed it. He repeated the dressing every day. As of a result of his actions, the surgeon restored him to health within two weeks.
The surgeon used the debridement technique to clean and eventually repair the wound that is not too different to the present day technique.
It must be said that a similar wound with the aid of some fecklesssurgery brought the end to the reign of Richard Coer de Lion (Richard I) some decades before.
Maybe it was because of the surgeon’s skill, which led Edward when he became King Edward I (Long shanks) of England to set up the first Military Medical Service in Britain.
It is a shame that people only seem to remember the Long shanks of Brave heart when in reality he was King of England and a very strong King for the English.
The medical profession was given more licence to practise and several more surgeons were recruited into the Armies that the Kings from there on end took with their troopson campaigns abroad. History shows that the most successful rulers were the tyrannical or strong rulers.
“Perhaps in time the so-called Dark Ages will be thought of as including our own “92