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The History of Traditional Medicine and Herbal Plants in Iran

Nikbakht, A. and M. Kafi. 2008. The history of traditional medicine and herbal plants in Iran. ActaHorticulturea. 790: 255-258.


Medicinal plants have greatly attracted Iranians’ attention from ancient times. Great Iranian physicians believed that there is no pain without an herbal therapy. A part of Avesta (the holy Book of Merian – ancient Iranian religion) related to medical therapy art. According to the book, Serita was the first Iranian expert in medicine and Ahora Mazda (God) developed ten thousand herbals for him. Maads (the Kurds’ ancestors) founded medicinal knowledge of herbal plants about 9150 years ago. A great center of learning medicine was founded at Gondi Sapur University in the 4th century AD, which had a large hospital and an academy, and the first international medical congress was held there. After Islam appearance (1400 years ago), Iranian medical scientists had two distinct stages in participation in advancement of medical sciences: a) the age of translation, from 750-900 AD, when many graduates of Gondi Sapur translated the corpus of Galenic and Hippocratic works; and b) The golden age of creativity, from 900-1100 AD, that was the era of Iranian world stars in pharmacology and pharmacy such as Rhazes (850-932) and Avicenna (980-1037). In their period about forty different pharmaceutical dosage forms were used and different kinds of extraction and preparing herbal medicines were developed. They cared different types of diseases such as cancer by means of herbal therapy. In this paper we will discus and analyze different aspects of Iranian historical medicine and herbal plants usages.

Journal Papers

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