A rare Roman Silver Needle, Roman Imperial Period, ca. 1st - 2nd century CE
A rare silver needle, the rounded shaft tapering to a sharp point, a twisted handle with molded ring at the end. Eyeless needles were used for piercing and cauterizing and consequently, in addition to the cautery and cataract needle, would have been useful to the oculist in the treatment of opthalmic conditions.
Early Roman medicine was heavily based on religious and holistic practices, including prayers, chants, herbs, and charms. It wasn't until the late third century BC that Greek surgical practices and Greek doctors were brought to Rome. The military saw the first changes in medical practice, with the addition of permanent doctors, the establishment of military hospitals, and the widespread adoption of surgery.
Dimensions: Length: 5 1/2 inches (14 cm)
Condition: Intact and in very good condition overall, presented on a museum-quality custom mount.
Provenance: Private NYC collection, acquired from the NYC trade.
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