The dynamics of healthscaping: mapping communal hygiene in Bologna, 1287-1383

Taylor Zaneri, G. Geltner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


This article traces how urban communities operating with a humoral or Galenic medical paradigm understood and confronted the health challenges facing them, using the extraordinarily well-documented case of Bologna, Italy. Working within a GIS environment, the authors spatially analyse over 3,500 events recorded by the Ufficio del fango concerning violations of the city's health-related ordinances, augmented by other demographic and material data. As such, the study not only adds specificity to recent attempts to enrich the field of pre-modern public health, but also demonstrates that the Bolognese administration had a sophisticated and evolving understanding of communal health risks, and exposes several discrepancies between policy and practice.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2-27
Number of pages26
JournalUrban History
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2022

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