Not in stock at Prospero. Add to basket. Add to wishlist. What is wishlist? These essays focus on providing historic, intellectual, and cultural context to ancient Greek medical practice Medicine in general Radiology, imaging, nuclear medicine. Short description: Neurological Concepts in Ancient Greek Medicine is a collection of essays exploring neurological ideas between the Homer and Hellenistic eras.
These essays focus on providing historic, intellectual, and cultural context to ancient Greek medical practice and emphasizing the interest in the brain in such early historical periods. Long description: Neurological Concepts in Ancient Greek Medicine is a collection of essays exploring neurological ideas between the Homer and Hellenistic eras. Table of Contents: Neurological Concepts in Ancient Greek Medicine is a collection of essays exploring neurological ideas between the Homer and Hellenistic eras. Relevant matches. Recently viewed. Related to your recently viewed titles.
The observation that the eyes are connected to the brain is said to have been the result of dissections which revealed that the optic nerve leads to the brain [ 12 ]. Ears transmit sound The ears resonate and carry sound. The ears, Alcmaeon argues, are empty.
Since all cavities resonate sound, and since the ears are empty and therefore cavities, the ears resonate sound when sound enters into them. Alcmaeon suggests that sound is conveyed first to an outer chamber, and then, by reverberating there, the sound is carried to the brain [ 12 ]. Passages connect sensory organs to the brain There are passages which connect sense organs to the brain [ 13 ]. Alcmaeon thus conceives of the brain as the nucleus of all human perception.
These were significant developments in the understanding of cognition and perception. Although Alcmaeon might have correctly established the link between the brain and mind , he did not himself articulate any specific scientific view regarding the nature of the nervous system that can be safely said to be a view about the nervous system as it was later conceived [ 1 ].
Nonetheless, his work, even in its most basic form, laid the theoretical groundwork for further investigations into the nature of the brain. Praxagoras and Herophilus The questions raised by Alcmaeon influenced all medical researchers for the following thousand years. Understanding the causes of bodily movement and the role of mental agency became an important philosophical question.
A rational approach towards medicine and a sceptical attitude towards tradition were increasingly seen as the only means to solve this problem put forward by natural philosophy [ 4 ].
Praxagoras, a natural philosopher who lived in the 4th Century BC [ 15 ], held this view. His main contribution as a teacher of neurology, however, was to ask his students, one of whom was Herophilus of Alexandria, how it is that the intention of movement is transmitted to the bodily extremities [ 1 ]. Though Alcmaeon had provided the beginnings of an answer to the question in the previous century, the theories had neither been properly tested nor thoroughly proved by examination of the body.
Praxagoras answered his own question by postulating that there were in the body miniscule arteries that were responsible for transmitting signals through the body.
Neurological Concepts in Ancient Greek Medicine is a collection of essays exploring neurological ideas between the Archaic and Hellenistic eras. These essays. Neurological history claims its earliest origins in the 17th century with Thomas Willis's publication of Anatomy of the Brain, coming fully into.
Praxagoras did not himself locate and identify neurons, however. Herophilus of Kos Figure 1B was a student of Praxagoras, and so learnt about and discussed the theories of Alcmaeon and Praxagoras. Herophilus was the first to examine and report on the structure of the nervous system. He was able to do this by dissecting human cadavers [ 15 ], a practice that was in many places abandoned until the 16th Century [ 16 ].
This method allowed him to make many discoveries. Herophilus showed that the nervous system was distinct and separate from the cardiovascular system [ 15 ].
He noted the different function of sensory and motor nerves [ 1 ], something neither Alcmaeon nor Praxagoras hypothesised. In examining these nerves by dissection of the spinal regions, he was able to observe that they originate in the brain and are threaded throughout the whole body [ 1 ]. These discoveries were accompanied by the realisation that motor nerves were joined to muscles and sensory nerves to organs of sensation [ 15 ]. In so doing, Herophilus proved-and indeed improved upon-the earlier theories of Alcmaeon and Praxagoras. In addition, Herophilus distinguished between the cerebrum and cerebellum and measured the pulse of blood through the body.
In making his observations, Herophilus was one of the first in history to acknowledge and correctly articulate the separate systems contained within the body and to prove the particular primacy of the brain as the prime mover of those systems. Conclusion Considering the technological limitations of their age, the ideas and discoveries of Alcmaeon, Praxagoras, and Herophilus can be greatly appreciated for the power of their thought, the keenness of their observation, and the logic of their theories Table 1.
The encephalocentric model to which Alcmaeon and Herophilus adhered, and which was praised by Plato but rejected by Aristotle, proved not only that the brain was the seat of the mind, but also that it was connected to a complex nervous system which was threaded throughout the body. The idea of a nervous system is now central not only to neuroscience , but also to all anatomy; it is the link between the mind and the body.
In attempting to demonstrate their theories through dissection and extended observation, these physician-philosophers provided a sound exemplum for future medical research and discovery. The work of the one would have been insignificant without the perseverance of the other: Alcmaeon, Praxagoras, and Herophilus all relied on and believed in the possibilities that can arise from testing theories through observation and relentless query.
And despite the intriguing theories propounded by Alcmaeon, it took his successors to correct, refine, and advance his ideas in astonishing new directions. Testament to their lives is the fact that their basic ideas and observations remain the foundation of neurological research done today.
KPP provided the translations of the Greek and Latin texts and assessed the classical sources and secondary literature. PKP provided the neurological insights and clinical experience, and added to the technical aspects of the material.
It is in the Phaedo that Socrates refers to the brain as the central organ of sense. Many scholars believe Plato is directly referring to Alcmaeon. It is possible that Alcmaeon conceived of these channels as pores through which the soul or pneuma flowed. These points do not, however, detract from the more important advancements he made. However, like Alcmaeon, Erasistratus believed that the nervous system was filled with pneuma or soul-spirit which fills the body with life.
There is no evidence that Herophilus agreed with this point, and all the extant documents suggest that Herophilus believed the threads that constitute the nervous system merely to carry signals and link the brain to the body. Oxford: Routledge. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press. Cerebral Cortex Frede M Essays in Ancient Philosophy. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.
International Journal of Cardiology Lloyd G Alcmaeon and the early history of dissection.
He was the son of Heraklides and belonged to a family of physicians who claimed their ancestry from Asclepius, the god of medicine 7 , 8. You are commenting using your Facebook account. Donald Boudreau. Alternately, disease can occur when there is a fault in one part of the body e. When air is sucked up through the nostrils the smell is transmitted to the brain [ 9 ]. Facing Eugenics. The relatively unknown Asclepiades is presented in greater detail, since his pioneering contributions were understood only in recent decades with the advent of the molecular era of medicine 2 - 4.
SudhoffsArchiv Diels H Doxographigraeci. Berlin: Reimer.
Doty RW Alkmaion's discovery that brain creates mind: a revolution in human knowledge comparable to that of Copernicus and of Darwin. Neuroscience Proceedings of the Royal Society of Medicine Hermann KF DialogiPlatonis. Manhattan: Harper Brothers Press.