"The reader who after having studied a Hippocratic treatise turns to Galen, Hippocrates' greatest admirer and follower, feels rather bewildered. He misses the clarity and simplicity of the Hippocratic writer, his straightforward way of putting things, and finds Galen verbose, quibbling, hairsplitting at times. However, he should not let himself be discouraged, should keep reading and he will soon discover that Galen was a very great physician who has a great deal to say. Times had changed since the days of Hippocrates; almost six centuries had elapsed, generations of sophists had systematized knowledge and taught the art of disputation, and gone were the days of the democratic city states of ancient Greece. Galen wrote most of his books in imperial Rome, in the whirl of a metropolis that was the capital of the entire Western world. Galen's Hygiene is a real mine of information. It shows how highly developed and sophisticated personal hygiene had become since the days of Hippocrates and Diocles. It was not a hygiene for the masses, for the common people but was addressed to a small upper class, was written "for Greeks and for those who, though born barbarians by nature, yet emulate the culture of the Greeks." The Romans of noble birth in the second century A.D. were no longer the Romans of early republican days who were not afraid to handle the plough and take the sword in hand. They were landowners, politicians, administrators who lived in close connection with the imperial court. They were deeply imbued with Greek culture and had the leisure to devote much attention to their physical wellbeing. They had the time and the means to follow the precepts of Galen's hygiene"--Introduction. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2010 APA, all rights reserved).