Bald’s Leechbook

Bald’s Leechbook

Winchester (United Kingdom) — Mid 10th century

Bald’s Leechbook

  1. Description
  2. Facsimile Editions (1)
Bald’s Leechbook

Bald’s Leechbook is a large Old English collection of medical remedies ranging from Late Antiquity to contemporary Anglo-Saxon sources. This important work survives in only one manuscript and its name is a modernization of the Old English lǣce-bōc or “book of medical prescriptions” in combination with the name of the man who patronized the manuscript. It was created in the 9th century, possibly as part of the educational reforms of King Alfred the Great. The work is organized from head-to-foot: the first book covers external maladies, the second internal disorders, and the third is a text comprising Anglo-Saxon medical practices predating the influences of Mediterranean sources. Recent research indicates that one of the remedies found in the manuscript, known as “Bald’s eyesalve”, has promise as a treatment for the antibiotic-resistant MRSA virus.


Alternative Titles
Balds Arzneibuch
Bald's Laeceboc
Size / Format
256 pages / 27.0 × 19.0 cm
Mid 10th century

Available facsimile editions:
Facsimile Editions

#1 Bald’s Leechbook

Commentary: 1 volume by Cyril E. Wright and Randolph Quirk
1 volume: Exact reproduction of the original document (extent, color and size) Reproduction of the entire original document as detailed as possible (scope, format, colors). The binding may not correspond to the original or current document binding.
You might also be interested in:
Book of Simple Medicines - Codex Bruxellensis
France – Second half of the 15th century

Experience More
Old English Illustrated Pharmacopoeia
Canterbury (United Kingdom) – Third quarter of the 9th – first half of the 17th century

Experience More
Blog articles worth reading
Filter selection