A millennium ago, one of the first papers on the treatment of liver disease using leeches was created. The author of this work was Galen – a Greek court physician to the emperor and author of more than 120 studies in anatomy, physiology, pathology and pharmacology. He was also the first to propose leeches be exported to other countries. However, his idea was not supported in his country. Leech therapy had been implemented in Egypt for some time prior. By order of the Egyptian ruler Ptolemy I, pond leeches were caught and sold in Asia and Africa, transported on the Nile – Egypt’s main river. Subsequently, leech fishing has become one of the most important ways to earn an income in Egypt. Leech fishing played a significant role in the fishing policies pursued by the queen, who later became a legend. As you may have guessed, this queen was Cleopatra – the Egyptian queen, who ruled Egypt with her husband and brother Ptolemy in 69-30 years BC. e. After the death of Ptolemy, to keep the throne, she married Caesar. She was his mistress and later became his wife. As a queen, her only chance to retain power was to produce a successor to the thrown, however, Cleopatra could not get pregnant. After trying all folk remedies, ointments, drugs, rituals and spells and paid for the most expensive Egyptian healers, at the royal palace arrived a healer named Cleomenes and said he knew “the surest means”. As you may have guessed, it was medical leeches. After a few sessions of hirudotherapy, of course, all the while sharing a bed with her husband, Cleopatra realized that she was expecting a an heir. Following this miraculous healing, leeches were widely depicted on the walls of tombs for the next ten generations of Egyptian pharaohs.Leeches were also quite popular in Rome. Leech images can be found on ancient vases, they are also mentioned in the manuscripts of the Roman connoisseurs of medical healing. For example, Pliny – a statesman, historian and writer, author of the 37-volume encyclopedia study “Natural History”, in volumes 28th and 32nd talks about drugs of animal origin, including the treatment of medical leeches.It is also known that leeches inspired ancient masters of painting, in the art of vase painting and sculpture. One of the masters of Attic red-figure vase painting founders of the end of VI century BC. Euphronios became known for inventing an original ornament. If you look at this ornament more closely, you can be distinguish in each of the two patterns leeches, interwoven with each other. Recognizable and distinguishable pattern even sucker on the front part of the body, the effects of this motif has become a pattern that was used master vase painting for centuries. Many people today have forgotten that it leeches became his prototype. Drew leech and in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. The museums are stored special vessels for containing leeches. Painted vessels such kind of “dance of the leech.”Italian painter of the early Renaissance Sandro Botticelli known for his numerous paintings of religious and mythological themes. Familiar to fans of his work and original Distinguishing graceful portraits of this master, including “Julio” (1495).At one of these portraits depicted session setting a few leeches behind the ear to the patient.