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Hua Tuo, the Divine Doctor

Tags: doctor | god | Hua Tuo | print

This print portrays Hua Tuo as a god. The Chinese characters of Hua Tuo “華坨” may have been a slip of the pen in writing “華佗”. The misstep was fairly common in the old times when many people were illiterate. Sometimes the “華” (Hua) in the name was mistakenly written as “化.” Hua Tuo was born in the Three Kingdoms period. He was versed in Confucian classics and was a master of ways to good health. He was particularly skilled in Chinese medicine, acupuncture, and surgeries. He scraped the bones to rid of poisons and used Mafeisan as anesthetic in surgeries. He also used acupuncture to cure Cao Cao, a fellow townsman, of headaches. Hua Tuo’s medical skills earned him the venerable name of “Divine Doctor.” He is worshiped by both doctors and pharmacists who wish to become successful in their medical careers and to relieve people from diseases. There are many stories in history books and folklore about how Hua Tuo magically treated patients.


30 x20.5 cm

National Museum of History