The Operator for the Teeth: Charles Allen 1685
The first English Dentistry Text-book.
Knowing that it is the duty of every man, and especially of such as live under a civil government, (where the general interest always includes the particular) to contribute as much as he can (in his own station) to the public good: and also of what importance it is to all men to be informed of those benefits which by my art they may enjoy; I am resolved to set down here, what I think most convenient for every one to understand concerning the preservation, and melioration of his own teeth; a thing indeed of little esteem among most people, but in truth of inestimable value for its many and important consequences. However, in so doing I shall acquit my self of my duty towards God and Man; and provided my endeavours prove but beneficial to others (as certainly they will if put in Practice) it is all I desire caring very little what opinion the critics have of me.
Of what utility this undertaking of mine may be to every body, will appear by the sequel of this discourse: whereof the scope is to prevent the loss of teeth, the use of which is so necessary in the preparing of food, that the want of such a help (if not supplied by strong dissolvents) hinders a true concoction of the Aliments in the stomach: whence do proceed indigestions, and abundance of crudities very noxious to the body of man: as being the seed of most of those innumerable diseases, and infirmities whereby life is not only made troublesome to us, but also considerably shorter than it would otherwise be:
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