Even the brightest lights grow dim if they are not attended, and the great old torch-bearers and their works needs refreshment. After Nicaise all the Europeans, except the English speaking people, had new editions and translations of Guy’s Major Surgery. With this translation of Nicaise’s edition, all of the eight seminal treatises by the surgeons who brought surgery anew into Europe now are available to the English-Reader.
The long discursive Introductions and footnotes by Nicaise and Joubert, and footnotes and explanatory insertions by this translator supplement Guy’s text with a fine history of French surgery. Indeed, as Nicaise wrote in the historical Introduction to his edition of Pierre Franco, if we were to combine the introductions in his editions of Henri de Mondeville, Pierre Franco, and Guy de Chauliac with Malgaigne’s Introduction to his edition of Ambroise Pare, we will have a complete history of European Surgery before the modern era.
Guy’s era was that of the Great Plague, and his book was written after its first invasion. His respectful attitude toward his colleagues and his suave gentility secured him as an officer of the Church, and as a Surgeon for The Popes at Avignon.