In the video.. “Hafsa” Museum reveals the methods of treatment in the Ottoman era
Video duration 00 minutes 58 seconds
Sultana Hafsa Hospital Museum of Medical History in the state of Manisa (western Turkey) gives history buffs an opportunity to take a time tour in different historical eras to learn about the treatment methods used about 5 centuries ago.
This house of healing was founded by Sultana Aisha Hafsa (1479-1534), mother of the Ottoman Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent, in 1539, as part of the Sultana’s endowment that houses a mosque and a school of the same name.
In 2013, Dar Al-Shifa was transformed into a Museum of Medical History, attached to the State University of Manisa (Jalal Bayar), in order to provide history lovers with adequate information about the treatment methods used in the past.
In the Museum of Medical History, which has been used as a hospital for centuries, the tools and medicines used in the field of medicine in the Ottoman era have been on display for 9 years.
The museum contains animations and statues made of beeswax, explaining the method of preparing “Mesir Paste” – one of the traditional sweets for which Manisa is famous – and the application of some treatment methods in the past. It also contains a large collection of ancient manuscripts related to the history of medicine.
The museum offers its visitors the opportunity to tour the historic building, where psychiatric patients are treated with crafts, music and listening to murmurs of water.
The President of Manisa State University (Jalal Bayar), Ahmet Ataj, said that the museum, which has been open to visitors for 9 years, is the first specialized museum in Manisa.
Atag told Anadolu Agency that the ownership of the historic building was transferred from the General Directorate of Endowments to the university in 2010.
He explained that the number of visitors to the museum, which hosted an average of 100,000 visitors annually in the past years, decreased to 25,000 last year due to measures to prevent the spread of the Corona virus.
Atag stated that they expect the museum to witness a rise in the number of visitors this year, noting that the number of visitors may reach 150 thousand visitors until the end of 2022.
“The Sultana Hafsa Hospital Museum of Medical History has turned into a place frequented by local and foreign visitors to Manisa,” he added.
He continued, “The museum provides adequate information on the method of preparing the Mesir Paste dessert, which Manisa is famous for. It also provides important information on the methods and means of performing surgical operations in the Ottoman era, as well as information that includes the fields of pharmacy and medicine.”
Atag said that the museum also provides its visitors with a valuable opportunity to take a time tour in different historical eras, and learn about treatment methods used about 5 centuries ago, including means of preparing medicines, and preparing chemical compounds using medicinal herbs.
He noted that the historical building (Dar Al-Shifa) provided a wide range of medical services in the Ottoman era, as it was the place where medicines were prepared using medicinal herbs, and given to patients free of charge.
And he added that the Dar Al-Shifa building “witnessed in the Ottoman era a series of complex surgeries according to the perspective of that era, including eye surgery, and one of its sections used a sanatorium for psychiatric patients who were treated according to a method based on music therapy, practicing handicrafts and listening to murmurs of water.” .