Daily Hospital Life in One of the Early Psychiatric Hospitals (Eberbach, Rheingau 1815)

  • Uwe Henrik Peters


This study is based on the almost complete collection of 550 medical case histories on patients of the former asylum in the Eberbach monastery in Rheingau, that existed from 1815 to 1846 and that was considered one of the most advanced asylums of the twenties and thirties of the 19th century, because it was opened to practice moral treatment, treatment by means of a hospital and did so for 30 years. So it was not only one of the first but also one of the best. The archives also contain numerous administration files, letters, administration regulations, reports, and other materials. But other fortunate circumstances became more evident. The written reports were remarkably extensive. Since the asylum had been a completely new institution, every minute detail was recorded, even if it was quite irrelevant. Every day entries were made in the patients’ files. Since there were no telephones and since travelling by horse and by coach even over short distances was quite hard, all communications with the authorities were written down. The administration, the state-ministry in Wiesbaden, did not only want to be informed about every little incident but also insisted in being especially asked for permission whenever a new patient was admitted or discharged.


Administration Regulation Moral Treatment Modern Writing Final Defeat Fortunate Circumstance 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1985

Authors and Affiliations

  • Uwe Henrik Peters
    • 1
  1. 1.Dpt. of Psychiatry and NeurologyUniversity of CologneW.-Germany

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