Regimen Sanitatis Salernitanum: A Salernitan Regimen of Health
The Regimen Sanitatis Salernitanum, written sometime during the 12th or 13th centuries, is one of the most popular poems in the history of both medicine and literature. Although the work claims to be the product of the famous medical school of Salerno, Italy, and written for an anonymous English king, the true author is entirely unknown. The manuscript probably has its origins in an Arabic work, originally entitled "Sirr al-asrar." The work is filled with what is essentially common sense advice - don't eat too much, use moderate exercise, keep yourself clean, etc. For the modern enthusiast of the Middle Ages, the Regimen is an ideal source for information on daily life, beliefs, thoughts, and practices; it is also a source for authentic attitudes and prescriptions concerning every day foodstuffs, such as vegetables, herbs, and meats, along with advice on when to eat, how much to consume, and what foods were safe and which should be avoided to prevent disease.