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The philosophies of one age have become the absurdities of the next, and the foolishness of yesterday has become the wisdom of tomorrow...
William Osler, MD (1902)
As long as there has been suffering, there have been those who have taken it upon themselves to provide relief, whether it be by herbs and incantations, or by the latest genetically engineered and scientifically proven therapies. Sorcerers and charlatans have always found success in marketing their wares since there was (and is) disagreement regarding what is efficacious.
“The Quack Doctor” in Every Saturday (January 14, 1871) by F.O.C. Darley
Mercury was a foundation in the treatment of syphilis well into the nineteenth century and “quicksilver,” which was another name for this metal, became the genesis for the term “quack” to represent the unethical or incompetent physician.