View Full Version : The history of psychiatric services

06-03-2008, 05:39 PM
"Until the middle of the 18th century, there were hardly any special
provisions for the mentally ill in Europe. In England, for example,
the only hospital for these patients was the Bethlem Hospital,
founded in 1247.

In most of continental Europe, there was a similar lack in hospital
provision except in Spain where some hospitals were present from the
Middle Ages. This provision reflects the Islamic influence in Spain,
for mental illness was viewed differently within Islam and

Both faiths regarded mental illness as the result of supernatural
intervention: within Judeo-Christian teaching, it indicated demonic
possession and/or the effects of sin; within Islamic teaching the
intervention was not necessarily malign nor necessarily the result
of wrongdoing.

In keeping with this more positive approach, Islamic medicine was
more concerned for mental disorder and the Arab physician Rhazes
cared for mental patients in Baghdad in the 10th century."

From the 'Shorter oxford textbook of Psychiatry' (Michael Gelder)

============ ========= ========= ========= ========= ===

"The early Islamic tradition, like its Christian counterpart, was
humane in its treatment of the mentally ill.

The first asylums for the mentally ill, for instance, were built in
the eighth century in Fez, Morocco, and in Baghdad. Others were soon
added in Cairo and Damascus.

As the Baghdad Caliphate became more dogmatic and antirationalistic,
the Hippocratic tradition in medicine found refuge in the rival
Andalucian Caliphate of Spain, where European and Islamic cultures
mixed with fecundity. The first European hospital exclusively
organized for the mentally ill was inaugurated in 1409 in the
Spanish city of Valencia"

New Oxford Textbook of Psychiatry, Volume 1

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06-18-2008, 07:13 AM
Interesting! JazaakAllah khair bro!


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