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December 26, 1953


Author Affiliations

New York
From the Department of Physiology, New York University College of Medicine.

JAMA. 1953;153(17):1512-1514. doi:10.1001/jama.1953.02940340014005

We cannot properly speak of physiology, and therefore we cannot speak of comparative physiology, until the time of Harvey. But it is worthy of emphasis that the discoverer of the circulation utilized the comparative method as extensively as any man since his time. It is something of a paradox that Harvey, in observations on the circulation of the blood, failed to challenge the Galenic view on how the blood got from the arteries to the veins but was content to believe that it seeped through the soft organs simply as water seeps through sand.

CONTRIBUTIONS OF MALPIGHI  The microscope, as improved by Galileo, was available in Harvey's time, but either because of lack of acquaintance with the instrument or lack of interest in the finer structure of the body, he failed to use it. It was Galileo's compatriot, Marcello Malpighi, who introduced this instrument into the study of the structure

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