This monograph purports to be useful not only to specialists but to physicians and even to the general public. It is written in a literary style and gives the history of trachoma, its treatment and its prophylaxis.
The history is especially interesting, as the author describes the appearance of trachoma in Egypt, Greece, Rome and Spain. In separate chapters he deals with the blindness of great men in history, and he offers his opinion that the Greek poet Homer lost his sight from trachoma after a trip into Egypt and Italy before he went to Ithaca, where he made the plan for the Odyssey.
He believes that St. Francis of Assisi became blind from trachoma after a protracted illness with the disease. His opinion coincides with that of the historian Johannes Jorgeson, who asserted that St. Francis acquired trachoma in Egypt. The treatment given to the monk consisted of repeated