Trials of an Ordinary Doctor: Joannes Groenevelt in Seventeenth-Century London, by Harold J. Cook, 301 pp, with illus, $45, ISBN 0-8018-4778-8, Baltimore, Md, Johns Hopkins University Press, 1994.
In the last three decades the history of medicine has been greatly enriched by an interest brought from social history, which has stressed what happened to people when they became sick and were treated by the average practitioners. This is in contrast to an older history of medicine, which had as its main emphases the great doctors and the development of important ideas about health and disease and its treatments. In the two volumes reviewed herein, we see an important slice of British medicine and British life in the period from the late 17th to the early 20th centuries.
While in our day the question of access to medical care has become a key issue for debate, it is important to remember