HISTORY OF ANATOMY IN THE LIBRARY OF THE COMPLUTENSE UNIVERSITY. Virtual Exhibition
Juan Carlos Domínguez and Manuela Crego
On the occasion of "XXV Congress of the Spanish Anatomical Society", held in Madrid between 14th and 17th September 2011, the Library of the Faculty of Medicine of the Complutense University in Madrid has performed a virtual exhibition entitled "The History of Anatomy in the Complutense Library". We present a big bibliographic heritage, specially in "Anatomy", from the collections of the Library of the Universidad Complutense de Madrid, mainly in its Historical Library "Marqués de Valdecilla" and the Library of the Faculty of Medicine. Some of these books were acquired by the Complutense University for many centuries and also with donations throughout our long history. The collections were historically improved with the development of the studies of Medicine and Surgery with collections of the "Reales Estudios de San Isidro" and the old Faculty of Medicine in Alcala de Henares. Fundamental works for anatomical knowledge also were incorporated into the Library holdings in different periods, as thanks to "Real Colegio de Cirugía de San Carlos", created in 1797 by the King Carlos III, and the subsequent creation in 1799 of the "Real Colegio de Cirugía y Medicina" that linked both specialities. After many changes reappeared in Madrid, around the middle of the XIXth century, the "Faculty of Medicine, Surgery and Pharmacy" in the new "Universidad Central". To this period belongs a large and valuable numbers of books and atlas of anatomy.
This virtual exhibition will be a "permanent" Web Page where will be collected the main books on the subject of anatomy of the Library of Complutense University. It is a selection of authors and their best works chronologically structured. It begins with a selection of classical and medieval books of anatomy. There is also a separate section dedicated to the famous Vesalius who was a real revolutionary compared with the previous studies of anatomy. Finally the most important anatomical production is selected for centuries from the 16th to the 20th century.
This exhibition provides information about the best anatomists and their works and the access to the full text of books if available and more information about other books of the authors that could be in our Library.
We include the bibliographic information about these works and also the access to the digital copy if available. This is possible because they are books of public domain and they are free of copyright. This Exhibition has been enriched mainly with "Google Project" signed with our University for scanning Bibliographic Heritage and the Project "Dioscorides Digital Library" - "Section of Anatomy". This latest Project with 53.132 records of Anatomy.
de Johannes de Ketham
This section collects some of the most important works of anatomy existing at the University, before of the figure of Vesalius and the great impact of his work. Some of them are heirs to a long historical tradition, and the compilation of knowledge from the Greco-Roman antiquity, also provided anatomical knowledge from the Muslim and Jewish, with figures like Avicenna, Maimonides, and others. Together with medieval anatomical knowledge.
Some of these works come from classics authors published in medieval times as Galen, and other prominent medievals figures as Mondino de Liucci, Giovanni Arcolani, Berengario da Carpi, Alessandro Benedetti, Alessandro Achillini, all from Italy. In France had great relevance: Jacobus Sylvius, also known as "Jacques Dubois", Charles Estienne, and others. In Spain it is necessary to highlight the figure of Andrés Laguna. The works of this period, called by experts "Pre Vesalius", come from a tradition based mainly on the interpretation of classical texts, rather than a true "scientific observation", which will occur shortly thereafter and whose maximum exponent is Vesalius.
De humani corporis fabrica,
de Andreas Vesalius
The figure of Vesalius "Andreas Vesalius" (1514-1564) represents a radical change with respect to the classical view of the anatomy before his studies. Vesalius was born in Brussels and trained as a physician and anatomist in Leuven, Paris and Padua. He is considered the father of the "Modern Anatomy" because established the principles of an anatomy more scientific, based on the "direct observation" of the human body, not only in the interpretation of classical texts as it was until his arrival. He was in the service of Charles V and Philip II and died in the Greek island of Zante after a trip to the Holy Land.
His masterpiece was "De humani corporis fabrica", Basel (1543), known as the "Fabrica", consists of seven books and represents a total break with the previous anatomical works, based on the experience provided by dissections and not only in the literary descriptions as before. It was written in Latin and part of the great value of this book comes from the "xylographics illustrations" made with wooden plates. It was published again in 1555 with major improvements. Vesalius leaves his knowledge and legacy in the hands of many disciples and followers.
Historia de la composición
del cuerpo humano,
de Ioan de Valuerde de Hamusco
After of the valuable and revolutionary contribution of Vesalius, mainly with the publication of the "Fabrica", are produced major advances in the morphological knowledge of human anatomy, refusing the classical tradition "Galenic" predominant until the sixteenth century. The progress in the anatomy of this time is linked to the emergence of university studies in Europe: Leuven, Montpellier, Paris, Pisa, Padua, Salamanca, Venice.
Other major figures of the anatomy of the sixteenth century in Italy were: Gabrielle Falloppio, Realdo Colombo, Giulio Cesare Aranzi, Constanzo Varoli, Bartolomeo Eustachi, Gabriele Cuneo. Some of them were companions or disciples of Vesalius. In Spain could include leading figures such as Pedro Jimeno, a pupil of Vesalius, and Luis Collado. Other important anatomists were Juan Valverde de Hamusco, a key figure of the Spanish Renaissance, and Alfonso Rodríguez de Guevara. In Switzerland were important Caspar Bauhin and Felix Platter and in Germany Leonhard Fuchs.
In the sixteenth century the "artistics"anatomical studies were very important, performed by great Renaissance artists like Leonardo da Vinci, Albrecht Dürer, and others.
It is also necessary to note that from the sixteenth century the formal aspect of the books introduces modern variants established by the new provisions relating to the publishing of printed books.
Tabulae anatomicae LXXIIX...,
de Iulii Casserii...
The seventeenth century is the century of "Baroque period". In anatomy, as in other scientific disciplines, there is also a progressive transfer of the knowledge of the Mediterranean to the northern Europe, particularly from Italy to Holland and England. To the natural observation of the anatomy was linked the introduction of experimental and mathematical methods, thanks to the incorporation of the new ideas and theories provided by the greatest scientists of the moment as Francis Bacon, Rene Descartes, Galileo Galilei and other figures like Newton , Kepler, Pascal, Leibniz. The anatomy introduced the great discoveries of the moment like the microscope, that allowed a better anatomical observation. Moreover, the anatomical texts are enriched with higher-quality illustrations engraved with copper-plates.
It is also the century of the progress in Physiology, one of the leading figures was William Harvey, who applied the Physiology to the anatomical studies, his works about the heart and blood circulation achieved a great prestige. It is also the century in which appear the first comparative anatomies.
In the seventeenth century the most important developments of the anatomy took place in Italy, Holland, France and England. Some of the most important figures in the anatomy of this seventeenth century are: Marcello Malpighi, is one of the first to use the microscope for anatomical observation, in Italy also are important: Bernardino Genga, Giovanni D. Santorini, Giovanni A. Borelli. Other figures in the anatomy of the moment are the French: Joseph-Guichard Duverney, with important works on the eyes, André du Laurens, Raymond Vieussens, who is known for his anatomical studies of the nervous system and cardiology. In England other relevants anatomists were: Nathaniel Highmore, who was an eminence in the study of blood circulation, Thomas Wharton who studied the glands, Thomas Willis, the nervous system, and Francis Glisson, the liver. In the Netherlands stand out: Gerard Blaes "Blasius", Isbrand V. Diemerbroeck, Frederik Ruysch and Govard Bidloo.
In Spain the most important anatomists were Juan del Castillo and José Rivilla Bonet.
de Bartolomaei Eustachi
The eighteenth century is the period of the "Age of Enlightenment", the anatomical studies focus more on descriptions of anatomical regions than in the study of organs and systems, as in previous centuries, it supposed the development of the "topographic anatomy". The advances in the macroscopic and functional anatomy represent a great progress in medicine. It is also necessary to note the improvements introduced in the anatomical illustrations that accompany these works, because the copperplate, typical of earlier times, was gradually replaced by the engraving of "steel" and also the use of "halftones" and "plates" in color in the illustrations.
In Italy the most prominent figures of the anatomy of the moment were: Giovanni Battista Morgagni, who in one of his most important books compiled case history and autopsies, serving as a basis for a better development of the pathology, Antonio Scarpa studied among other topics the ear. Other Italian anatomists were Leopoldo M. Caldani and Vincenzo Malacarne. In the Netherlands stand out: Bernhard Siegfried Albinus, A. Von Haller and Pieter Camper. In England are well known Willian Cheselden, the brothers William and John Hunter and Alexander Monro, who came from an illustrious family of Scottish anatomists, studied "osteology."
The main French anatomist was Jacques Benigne Winslow, of Danish origin but trained in France, is considered the greatest anatomist of his age, his most important work was the "Exposition anatómique de la structure du corps humain". It should be also noted the figures of Felix Vicq d'Azir and Jean Baptiste Senac.
In the eighteenth century the Spanish anatomy was developed thanks to the presence of "enlightened" kings as Carlos III and Carlos IV, and were renowned figures of the anatomy: Jaime Bonells and Ignacio Lacaba, Martin Martinez and Juan de Dios Lopez.
Atlas d'anatomie descriptive
du corps humaine, de
Constantine-Louis Bonany ...
In the nineteenth century there was a great progress in the "comparative and descriptive anatomy" and a revolution in the field of physiology and embryology. In the anatomy, there were new developments in the so-called "descriptive anatomy," thanks to the great discoveries that took place at that time. In France, it was shown that pathological lesions did not affect the limbs or organs, but the infection had affinity and was located in different structures or membranes. Indeed, France is one of the main poles of the anatomy of the moment, one of the leading figures was M. François Xavier Bichat, who showed that the anatomical elements with a constant nature in different parts of the body were the tissues. Other relevant French anatomists were: Jean Cruveilhier, Pierre Augustin Beclard, Jean Baptiste Marc Bourgery, author of the anatomical text most complete and best illustrated of the moment, Jules G. Cloquet, M. P. C. Sappey, and in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century the leading figure was Leo Testut.
In the United Kingdom stood out among others: Charles Bell, John Goodsir, Richard D. Grainger, etc. Although for his great significance later it should be noted the figure of Henry Gray, with his "Gray's Anatomy" still in use. Soemmerring., J. C. Reil and at the end of the century Karl von Bardeleben had a great importance in Germany. In Spain are notable: Manuel Hurtado de Mendoza and Lorenzo Boscasa. In the early twentieth century should be noted the works of Aureliano Maestre de San Juan, Julian Calleja, Ramon y Cajal, Federico Olóriz, etc.
It is also necessary to highlight the role played by the development of "comparative anatomy," with figures such as Georges Cuvier, E. G. Saint-Hilaire in France. In Germany, F. Blumenbach and Richard Owen in Britain. In Cytology and embryology can be included authors such as T. A. H. Schwann, J. E. Purkyne, F.G. Henle, K.E. von Baer
At the end of the nineteenth century the discovery of X-rays provided a breakthrough to the anatomy. This allowed the anatomists to study the organs and tissues in living beings. With continuity between the nineteenth and twentieth century we should mention renowned anatomists as Leo Testut, Henry Gray, J. Sobotta, Karl von Bardeleben. Other key figures of this time, members of other specialties such as histology, embryology and cytology were: R. Virchow, M. J. S. Schultze, R. A. Kolliker.