Hippocratic oath, An oath said to have been dictated by Hippocrates to his disciples. Such an oath is still administered to candidates for graduation in medicine.
An English translation of the oath reads:
I swear by Apollo the physician, by Aesculapius, and Health, and All-heal, and all the gods and goddesses, that according to my ability and my judgement, I will keep this Oath and this stipulation -- to reckon him who taught me this Art equally dear to me as my parents, to share my substance with him, and relieve his necessities if required; to look upon his offspring in the same footing as my own brothers, and to teach them this Art, if they wish to learn it, without fee or stipulation; and that by precept, lecture, and every mode of instruction, I will impart a knowledge of the Art to my own sons, and of my teachers, and to disciples bound by a stipulation and oath according to the law of medicine, but to none others.
I will follow that system or regimen which, according to my ability and judgement, I consider for the benefit of my patients, and abstain from whatever is deleterious and mischievous.
I will give no deadly medicine to any one if asked, nor suggest any such counsel; and in like manner I will not give to a woman a pessary to produce abortion.
With purity and with holiness I will pass my life and practice my Art. I will not cut persons labouring under the stone, but will leave this to be done by men who are practitioners of this work. Into whatever houses I enter, I will go into them for the benefit of the sick, and will abstain from every voluntary act of mischief and corruption; and, further, from the seduction of females or males, of freemen and slaves.
Whatever, in connection with my professional service, or not in connection with it, I see or hear, in the life of men, which ought not to be spoken of abroad, I will not divulge, as reckoning that all such should be kept secret.
While I continue to keep this Oath unviolated, may it be granted to me to enjoy life and the practice of the Art, respected by all men, in all times. But should I trespass and violate this Oath, may the reverse be my lot.
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