Dutch term – Chirurgijn

A chirurgijn is a barber or surgeon. In most towns most of the minor ailments were treated by a chirurgijn rather than a doctor with an academic educations.

Chirurgijns learned their trade as apprentices. Larger cities had chirurgijnsgildes or surgeon guilds, that regulated entry to the trade and oversaw apprenticeships and master exams.

Treatments provided by chirurgijns included blood letting, treatments of sores and skin conditions, and setting broken bones. They were also barbers who cut hair or shaved their customers.

surgeon treating a leg sore

Chirurgijn, 1694. Credits: Caspar Luyken, collection Rijksmuseum (public domain)


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Yvette Hoitink is a professional genealogist in the Netherlands. She has been doing genealogy for almost 25 years. Her expertise is helping people from across the world find their ancestors in the Netherlands. Read about Yvette's professional genealogy services.

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