Jewish medical students and graduates in Scotland, 1739-1862*

From earliest times Jewish tradition has linked medical science with religion. Many passages in the Talmud deal with medical matters, and the Rabbis recommended that no wise person should reside in a town without a resident physician.((Babylonian Talmnd: Sanhedrin 17b.)) Indeed, a long tradition of Rabbi physicians dates back to Talmudic times.

When medical schools came to be established in Christian Europe during the Middle Ages, restrictions were often placed on Jewish students. Many univer? sities were religious institutions, so were frequently closed to Jews. Physicians were often trained by a system of apprenticeship rather than at university schools of medicine, and records of Jewish physicians entering into contracts for training medical apprentices can be found dating back to the fifteenth century.((Harry Friedenwald, The Jews and Medicine I (Baltimore 1944) 221.)) Some system of medical apprenticeship is likely to be much older than that, and there is evidence of it

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