par Droixhe, Daniel
Référence Annales de Bretagne et des pays de l'Ouest, 124, 4, page (83-110)
Publication Publié, 2017
Article révisé par les pairs
Résumé : Many travelling merchants sold medical drugs throughout Britany during the 18th century. One of best known was Algaron Toscano, the heir of a family tradition that went back to the 17h century. The Archives of the Société royale de médecine reveal his activity in several Breton towns - Saint-Malo, Brest, Josselin - but also in Chaillot and Saint-Quentin, between 1779 and 1785. Algaron handed out lealets that promoted a "blood depurant" that "cured" many diseases, among which "cancer". This article considers the process of accreditation used to convince his audience of the eficiency of his remedy, as well as some of the technical characteristics of his therapies, with regard to contemporary academic medicine. Algaron's name is often associated with another quack, Grassy, who also sold an anti-cancerous remedy. The American historian Matthew Ramsey reports his presence in Nantes, Rennes, Guingamp, Quintin, Morlaix, Josselin, etc., but also, if the name refers to the same person, in Île-de-France, Thiérache and Gascony. This study looks at his activity in Lamballe, in 1786, where a "placard" listed the "names of persons he has cured since he is in Nantes" and other "empiricists" who proposed remedies against "the most cruel disease". Did Algaron, facing the far more demanding regulation established by the Royal Society of Medicine, created in 1778, modify or pretend to change his commerce, to meet the new requirements concerning "secret remedies"? He certainly sold products that matched the wishes and recommendations of the rising interest in hygiene.