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Wed, 30 Jul 2014 06:44:53 EDT by admin, 86733 views
Institute of Military History of Hungary
History paper by Kincses, Katalin Mária (all papers)
From the History of the First Hungarian Barber-Chirurg-Guild: The Chirurgs in Cluj-Napoca
The history of Cluj-Napoca in the middle- and early modern age compared with other Hungarian cities is one of the most particularly revealing research-field. Specifically, the history of the handcraft, of the guilds as their advocacy system, their multi-layered tasks (taking part in the city-administration, in the social network) became well-known in the last decades.
Among the crafts the guild of the chirurgs, surgeons (barbers), is of special interest, as it is today difficult to imagine how healthcare could work as a union of craftsmen. Surgery meant, over centuries, the medical attendance to injuries; it meant only accident surgery.
Moreover, the chirurg-guild in Cluj-Napoca founded in 1568 was the first barber-guild of Hungary. Its constitution from 1648 we can get a glimpse of how the craftsmen in the guild worked. By now we know that about 80% of the barbers in Cluj Napoca were of Hungarian desendence; they came from Cluj-Napoca, from the town of Cibiu, Bihar county and from the villages in Kolos county. Furthermore, we know that in addition to three doctors in 1790 in the city, there were still six chirurgs.
Researching the Hungarian guild-database we managed to compile last year the protocols of the barber-guild in Cluj Napoca in the 17th and 18th centuries. Based on these protocols containing the names of every guild-members, we developed new ideas about the guild-system, the influence of the craftsmen in the city, and about their numbers. The number of the barbers in Cluj Napoca is unique even in European context: we can examine masters, fellows, servants in the documents.
Above all we have to ask: why were there so many healer persons in Cluj Napoca? Might we witness an unprecedented phenomenon, a „healer college” in the frame of a guild?
Brief Professional Bio:
Katalin Mária Kincses is managing editor of the journal Quarterly of Military History in Hungary, Institute and Museum of Military History. She received her PhD from ELTE in medieval and early modern Hungarian history in 2001. Her research interests include medieval and early modern Hungarian history, Environmental history, Hungarian historiography, history of 16-18th century mentality.