Endowment Fund: Selections for the History of Medicine

July 23, 2014 at 12:11 pm

Income from the Library’s Laurence M. and Hazel M. McColl Endowment Fund were used to purchase the following selected titles for the Mayo Clinic History of Medicine Library in 2014.

Colombier, Jean and François Doublet.  Instruction sur las manière de gouverner les insensés et de travailler à leur guérison dans les Asyles qui leur sont destinés.  Paris, Imprimerie Royale, 1785.

h2 ColombierThis was the first official directive in France to address management of people afflicted by mental illnesses by focusing on their welfare, anticipating by a decade the work of Philippe Pinel.  Colombier, the senior author of the policy, was the physician appointed by Necker for the newly created post of inspector of civic hospitals and prisons.  With this ground-breaking publication, Colombier sets the management of mental health firmly within the domain of central government authority, and makes it the object of enlightened intervention.  The first part, written by Colombier, discussed the design of institutions for curable lunatics.  A checklist of specifications of proven therapeutic value was presented: the presence of pure air and water on the site, regularly scheduled promenades and suitable diet.  The second part of the Instruction, the work of Doublet, reviewed the nosology of insanity and the most advanced forms of treatment devised by the medical art.

Wundt, Wilhelm.  Grundzuge der physiologischen Psycholgie.  Leipzig, Wilhelm Engelmann, 1874. 

Wundt made experimental investigations of normal individual reactions, reflex responses, and general behavior, and interpreted them in terms of neural mechanisms.  He is the founder of experimental psychology, and his book remains the most important on the subject.

Reil, Johann Christian.  Rhapsodieen uber die Anwendung der psychischen Curn Geirsteszerruttungen.  Halle, Curtschen Buchhandlung, 1803. 

psyReil, a German physician, coined the term “psychiatry”.  He established the first journal of psychology the Archiv für die Physiologie.  He sought to publicize the plight of the insane in the asylums, and to develop a “psychical” method of treatment consistent with the moral treatment movement of the times.

Huarte y Navarro, Juan.  Examen de ingenious.  (The examination of men’s wits).  London, Adam Islip, 1596.  2nd ed.  Spanish physician and considered the first modern psychologist.  Huarte attempted to show the connection between psychology and physiology.  The Examen was translated into six languages.

Caelius Aurelianus.  Tardarum passionum libri V.  Basel, Heinrich Petri, 1529. 

From a clinical point of view the works of Aurelianus, based on Greek originals by Soranus of Ephesus now lost, represent the high-point of Graeco-Roman medical achievement.

Giffard, William.  Cases in midwifery.  [First book to illustrate the obstetrical profession]  London, B. Motte, 1734. 

Giffard is considered the first English obstetrician to publish substantial contributions to clinical midwifery.  He was a man-midwife and had a large practice in London.  His book was published after his death in 1734 and recounted the earliest record of the use of the secret Chamberlen forceps.  It was not unusual for newly invented medical instruments to be kept secret and this was the case with the forceps for almost 150 years.

h1 DeventerDeventer, Hendrik van (1651-1724).  Operationes chirurgicae novum lumen exhibentes obstetricantibus.  Leiden, Dyckhuisen, 1701.

Deventer is seen as an important physician of early modern obstetrics in the Netherlands. His knowledge of the pelvis was not superseded until the mid-nineteenth century.  Because of the fact that this author gave the first accurate description of the female pelvis and its deformities, he provided a practical basis for modern obstetrics.  He corrected Mauriceau’s misconception of the growth of the uterus in pregnancy and made the first attempt at an accurate description of the axis of the birth-canal.

Hilary J. Lane
History of Medicine Library, Coordinator


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