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September 1961

The Discovery of Reflexes.

Arch Neurol. 1961;5(3):349-350. doi:10.1001/archneur.1961.00450150115019

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A delightful and scholarly book has been written by Professor Liddell, successor to Sir Charles Sherrington in the chair of Physiology at Oxford. Sir Charles did not want a conventional biography, so Liddell has written about neurophysiology before Sherrington. By telling the story of The Discovery of Reflexes up to 1906, when The Integrative Action of the Nervous System was published, he has skilfully pointed out Sherrington's great contribution. The author says in his final paragraphs: "Although it is now sixty years since Sherrington first pointed to these possibilities at synaptic junctions, the full story has not yet been told. Nevertheless, during all that time the idea of such possibilities has been the working hypothesis which has been generally accepted for spinal and other high-speed reflexes, and is more than ever strengthened by present-day research and conceptions.

"The age in which Sherrington lived as a young man is remote indeed

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