The book covers the history of plastic surgery from the remarkable achievements of ancient civilizations e.g. India and Egypt, through the classical times of ancient Greece and Rome, up to the revolutionary techniques developed at the end of the Middle Age, the Renaissance and then beyond. Surgical progress has usually relied on the parallel development of anatomy. The knowledge of wound healing and how this has changed and influenced plastic surgery is covered in the first part. The development of the basic techniques of the specialty such as skin flaps, the grafting of skin and other tissues are followed throughout the centuries. In the Second Part the development of various surgical reconstructive procedures are described. The reader will realize how techniques which are routine today have evolved thanks to the ingenuity of our surgical ancestors. Finally in Part Three the birth of Cosmetic Surgery, which has fulfilled the dreams of our ancestors, is outlined. Its rapid development is described stressing the efforts required to overcome the prejudices and criticism.