Herophilus


Herophilus
born с 335 BC, Chalcedon, Bithynia
died с 280

Alexandrian physician, often called the father of anatomy.

He performed public dissections on human corpses; studied the cavities of the brain, which he regarded as the centre of the nervous system; traced the sinuses of the dura mater to their junction (the torcular Herophili); and classified nerve trunks as motor and sensory, distinguishing them from tendons and blood vessels. He described the eye, liver, salivary glands, pancreas, genitals, duodenum, and prostate gland (naming the last two) and was the first to measure the pulse. A student of Hippocrates' doctrine, he emphasized the curative powers of drugs, diet, and gymnastics. He wrote at least nine works, including a commentary on Hippocrates and a book for midwives, all lost in the destruction of the library of Alexandria.

* * *

▪ Greek physician

born c. 335 BC, , Chalcedon, Bithynia
died c. 280

      Alexandrian physician who was an early performer of public dissections on human cadavers; and often called the father of anatomy.

      As a member of the well-known scholastic community in the newly founded city of Alexandria during the single, brief period in Greek medical history when the ban on human dissection was lifted, Herophilus studied the ventricles (cavities) of the brain, the organ he regarded as the centre of the nervous system; traced the sinuses of the dura mater (the tough membrane covering the brain) to their junction, known as the torcular Herophili; and classified the nerve trunks—distinguishing them from tendons and blood vessels—as motor or sensory.

      He rendered careful accounts of the eye, liver, salivary glands, pancreas, and genital organs of both sexes. He described and named the duodenum, at the lower end of the stomach, and the prostate gland. A student of Hippocrates' doctrine of medicine, which was based on balancing the four humours (body fluids)—blood, phlegm, yellow bile (choler), and black bile (melancholy)—Herophilus emphasized the curative powers of drugs, dietetics, and gymnastics. He was first to measure the pulse, for which he used a water clock.

      Herophilus wrote at least nine works, including a commentary on Hippocrates, a book for midwives, and treatises on anatomy and the causes of sudden death, all lost in the destruction of the library of Alexandria (AD 272).

* * *


Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Herophilus — Herophilus, alexandr. Arzt nach 300 v. Chr., war der erste, der menschliche Leichen secirte und wurde dadurch Stifter einer anatom. Schule; die ersten wichtigen anatom. Entdeckungen werden ihm zugeschrieben. Außer einem Commentar über die… …   Herders Conversations-Lexikon

  • HEROPHILUS — Medicus celebris, Phalaridem sanitati restituit. Circa Olymp 53. Plin. l. 11. c. 37. l. 26. c. 2. et 3. et l. 29. c. 1. Cic. quaest. Acad. l. 2. Plutarch. de placitis Phil. l. 4. c. 22. et l. 5. c. 2. Tertull. l. de Anima, c. 10. Neander in… …   Hofmann J. Lexicon universale

  • Herophilus — Greek physician and anatomist of the Alexandrian school, circa 300 B.C. See torcular herophili …   Medical dictionary

  • HEROPHILUS —    a celebrated Greek physician who lived into the 3rd century B.C., born at Chalcedon, and settled at Alexandria, where he devoted himself specially to anatomy and helped to found the medical school in that city; his zeal is said to have led him …   The Nuttall Encyclopaedia

  • Herophilus — /hɪəˈrɒfələs/ (say hear rofuhluhs) noun died 280? BC, Greek physician; the first western anatomist, he distinguished nerves from blood vessels and sensory from motor nerves …   Australian English dictionary

  • Herophilus — …   Useful english dictionary

  • Herophilus of Chalcedon — (c. 300 bc) Greek anatomist and physician Herophilus, a pupil of Praxagoras of Cos, was one of the founders of the Alexandrian medical school set up at the end of the 4th century bc under the patronage of Ptolemy I Soter. Although none of his… …   Scientists

  • Herophilus of Chalcedon — See Hellenistic biological sciences …   History of philosophy

  • ГЕРОФИЛ —    • Herophĭlus,          Ήρόφιλος, отличный греческий врач из Халкедона в Бифинии, ученик Праксагора Косского, приверженец Гиппократа, сочинения которого он издал с объяснениями, жил в Александрии в царствование Александра Великого и первых… …   Реальный словарь классических древностей

  • Hellenistic biological sciences — R.J.Kankinson The five centuries that separate Aristotle’s death in 322 BC from Galen’s ascendancy in Rome in the latter part of the second century AD were fertile ones for the biological sciences, in particular medicine. Nor is the period solely …   History of philosophy


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.