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Physiology is an experimental science. The problems of physiology are problems of physics or of chemistry. Physiology thus becomes a superstructural science based upon anatomy, physics and chemistry. One who would solve the physical problems of physiology would also require a good working knowledge of mathematics. At the time Helmholtz undertook the solution of physical problems of physiology he was probably the best equipped man living, in the fundamental subjects above mentioned. For about ten years of his professorial life he was professor of anatomy and physiology. His foundation in anatomy was thus extended and elaborated far beyond that which most physiologists possessed. He was associated in his early studies with physicists and mathematicians so that his knowledge of physics and mathematics was also far beyond that of other physiologists of his time. We see in Helmholtz. then, a man in whom the circumstances of his early training and
HALL WS. THE CONTRIBUTIONS OF HELMHOLTZ TO PHYSIOLOGY AND PSYCHOLOGY. JAMA. 1902;XXXVIII(9):558–561. doi:10.1001/jama.1902.62480090010001c
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