Renaissance hospitals warm, comfortable environments

John Henderson of the University of London wants readers to know that the hospital in the Renaissance was not the hellhole depicted in many histories but "a warm environment and specialized care, which they would not have found in the community."

In his new book The Renaissance Hospital: Healing the Body and Healing the Soul, Henderson relates that "Renaissance hospitals, particularly in Florence, believed in manipulating the 'non-naturals,' things like diet, rest, sex and the environment, 'to keep a body healthy.'"