From the 14th century thermalism flourished in Italy, Europe and, last but not least, in the German Empire. Because of the elitist patients, who come from afar to visit the baths, ancient springs are revitalized, new ones developed, and extended with a sophisticated infrastructure. Simultaneously to a changed body culture an autonomous balneological discourse emerges for the first time, which feeds on ancient and Arabic sources and on empirical observations made at this time. In addition to the miraculous, the special social conditions one experiences during a stay at a spa far away from home are reflected upon primarily in contemporary literature, but also in painting, in which the ancient tradition plays an important role. Our conference aimed at bringing together different disciplinary and national approaches to a topic that is flourishing, but has so far been treated only sporadically.
Cécile Beuzelin (Paris), Stephan Busch (Trier), David Sanderson Chambers (London), Massimo Danzi (Genf), Martin Dreischmeier (Bielefeld), Anna Esposito (Rom), Frank Fürbeth (Frankfurt am Main), Pius Kaufmann (Zug), Simone Loleit (Essen), Michele Maritan (Padua), Marilyn Nicoud (Avignon), Concetta Pennuto (Tours), Christian Schulze (Bochum), Birgit Studt (Freiburg i.Br.)