Paracelsus, Prince of Physicians

The Prince of Wales called him a gifted healer and a one-man British Medical Association. Others called him the most enigmatic writer and controversial figure in the history of Western medicine. They called him the “Prince of Physicians” and the “Luther of Medicine”. Four hundred and fifty years ago his medical teachings and practices outraged the establishment, but they were the forerunners of Medicine today and of the Medicine to come.

Paracelsus Film


Paracelsus Brochure


The seven episode series follows Paracelsus through the most important and dangerous years of his life (1522-1530) and portrays a humane man with a strong sense of mission and awareness of his destiny. This powerful film deals with a peasant revolt, false teachings, ruthless tyrants and murdering agents. Only one man rises up against these evil forces: Paracelsus.

 Set in the turbulent age of the Renaissance, this fascinating period of history is splendidly evoked in costume and setting. The music was written by Richard Harvey who conducts the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. PARACELSUS was filmed on location in Hertfordshire, England, and in Switzerland.

 Episode One is 74 minutes long and the reining episodes 52 minutes each.


EPISODE ONE: ‘PEASANTS IN REVOLT’ – Powerful princes, a mad bishop and a ruthless banker combine to oppress a peasant populace. Paracelsus, a solitary figure, opposes them and, in so doing, discovers his destiny.

EPISODE TWO: ‘A TOUCH OF MAGIC’ – Sick of war and conflict, Paracelsus seeks a place to settle. He heads for Strassburg and confronts his arch rival, Dr. Hock, a supporter of the traditional methods of medicine Paracelsus has sworn to oppose. Fate once more lends a hand and Paracelsus is summoned to Basel to save a dying friend.

EPISODE THREE: ‘BOMBAST IN BASEL’ – Paracelsus’ miraculous cure of Froben brings him to the attention of the city Aldermen and he accepts the offer of the prestigious post of City Physician. Paracelsus now launches a one-man crusade against the outdated teachings of Galen and Avicenna, against quacks and apothecaries and all that is rotten in medicine. He soon makes enemies, amongst them Fugger, a scheming banker with his own reasons for seeing Paracelsus silenced.

EPISODE FOUR: ‘SAINTS AND SINNERS’ – Disbanded mercenaries, thugs and outlaws inhabit the surrounding hills of Basel. They systematically attack the outlying Anabaptist villages. With the aid of his cousin, the Knight Canstatt, Paracelsus helps the oppressed villagers. He soon discovers that someone is directing the outlays, someone with money and influence.

EPISODE FIVE: ‘SUDDEN DEATHS’ – Fugger always gets what he wants and he wants Paracelsus’ silence. He has the money to pay for it, and he does not care how he gets it. Meanwhile, Paracelsus lies sick with the calx disease. Death hangs in the air and Paracelsus, in a semi-conscious state, has portents of things to come: infamy, murder, assassination.

EPISODE SIX: ‘THE GATHERING STORM’ – Paracelsus, with his bombastic manner, is losing favour with the Basel authorities. The medical guild uses every opportunity to discredit him. Fugger once more plots Paracelsus’ downfall, this time using the corrupt magistrates of Basel.

EPISODE SEVEN: ‘THE FINAL INSULT’ – Paracelsus and his faithful companion Oporinus head for Nuremberg, an enlightened city where he hopes to find the peace and quiet he needs to write his books. The medical guild wants him out and once more the conspiring Fugger is on his heels. Before they consider his application to join the medical guild, they issue a challenge to Paracelsus for proof of his competency, to heal fifteen critically ill syphillitics in the city hospice. To them, an impossible task, but they underestimate Paracelsus, the Prince of Physicians.