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A list of key readings about Herophilus.
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  • von Staden H. (1989) Herophilus: The Art of Medicine in Early Alexandria. Edition, Translation, and Essays by Heinrich Von Staden, Herophilus. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 9780521236461. | Google Books preview.
  • Publisher's description: Herophilus, a contemporary of Euclid, practiced medicine in Alexandria in the third century B.C., and seems to have been the first Western scientist to dissect the human body. He made especially impressive contributions to many branches of anatomy and also developed influential views on many other aspects of medicine. Von Staden assembles the fragmentary evidence concerning one of the more important scientists of ancient Greece. Part 1 of the book presents the Greek and Latin texts accompanied by English translation and interpretative commentary. Significant background information is given in the introductory essay preceding each chapter. Part 2 briefly sketches the major developments within the Herophilean school after Herophilus, and discusses the individual members within it. (See Table of Contents and Excerpt here.)
  • Harris CRS. (1973). The heart and the vascular system in ancient Greek medicine, from Alcmaeon to Galen. Oxford, Clarendon Press
  • Magner L. (2005). A history of medicine, 2nd ed. Boca Raton, Taylor & Francis
  • Persaud TVN. (1984). Early history of human anatomy: from antiquity to the beginning of the modern era. Springfield, Charles C. Thomas
  • Prioreschi P. (1996). A history of medicine, Volume II, Greek medicine, 2nd ed. Omaha, Horatius Press
  • Robinson V. (1931). The story of medicine. New York, Tudor Publishing Co
  • Rocca J. (2003). Galen on the brain: anatomical knowledge and physiological speculation in the second century AD (studies in ancient medicine). Boston, Brill Academic Publishers
  • Sawday J. (1995). The body emblazoned: dissection and the human body in renaissance culture. London, Routledge
  • Tredennick H. (1954). Plato, The last days of socrates. The apology, crito, and phaedo translated with an introduction. West Drayton, Penguin Books
  • Vesalius A. (1543). De humani corporis fabrica, libri septum. Basel, Ioannis Oporini

Book chapters

  • Longrigg J. (1972). Herophilus. In Gillespie C, ed. Dictionary of scientific biography. Vol. 6. New York, Charles Scribbners Sons, 316-319

Journal Articles

  • Bay NSY, Bay BH. (2010). Da Vinci’s anatomy. J Morphol Sci 27: 11-13. | PDF of article
  • Chaplin A. (1919). The history of medical education in the universities of Oxford and Cambridge, 1500-1850. Proc R Soc Med 12(Suppl): 83-107
  • Dobson JF. (1925). Herophilus of Alexandria. Proc R Soc Med 18: 19-32. | PDF of article
    • Excerpt: About the end of the fourth century B.C. , very shortly after the death of Aristotle, we come to two great names in the history of medicine—Herophilus, who may be called the founder of Systematic Anatomy, and Erasistratus, the first scientific physiologist. They both migrated from their homes in Asia Minor to Alexandria, attracted thither by the prospect of material advancement and the facilities for prosecuting their advanced studies which Ptolemaic Egypt offered to all eminent students . Their works are entirely lost, but some details of their teaching may be recovered from the voluminous writings of Galen, who possessed their books in entirety , and from scattered references in later writers.
  • Folch E, Hernandez I, Barragan M, Franco-Paredes C. (2003). Infectious diseases, non-zero-sum thinking, and the developing world. Am J Med Sci 326: 66-72
  • Khan IA, Daya SK, Gowda RM. (2005). Evolution of the theory of circulation. Int J Cardiol 98: 519-521
  • McClusky DA 3rd, Skandalakis LJ, Colborn GL, Skandalakis JE. (1997). Hepatic surgery and hepatic surgical anatomy: historical partners in progress. World J Surg 21: 330-342
  • Potter P. (1976). Herophilus of Chalcedon: an assessment of his place in the history of anatomy. Bull Hist Med 50: 45-60
  • Prioreschi P. (2001). Determinants of the revival of dissection of the human body in the Middle Ages. Med Hypotheses 56: 229-234
  • Rose FC. (1994). The neurology of ancient Greece--an overview. J Hist Neurosci 3: 237-260
  • Scarborough J. (1976). Celsus on human vivisection at Ptolemaic Alexandria. Clio Med 11: 25-38
  • Smith CU. (2010). The triune brain in antiquity: Plato, Aristotle, Erasistratus. J Hist Neurosci 19: 1-14
  • Tomey MI, Komotar RJ, Mocco J. (2007). Herophilus, erasistratus, aretaeus, and galen: ancient roots of the bell-magendie law. Neurosurg Focus 23: E12
  • Van Praagh R, Van Praagh S. (1983). Aristotle's "triventricular" heart and the relevant early history of the cardiovascular system. Chest 84: 462-468
  • von Staden H. (1992). The discovery of the body: human dissection and its cultural contexts in ancient Greece. Yale J Biol Med 65: 223-241
  • Wills A. (1999). Herophilus, Erasistratus, and the birth of neuroscience. Lancet 354: 1719-1720
  • Wiltse LL, Pait TG. (1998). Herophilus of Alexandria (325-255 B. C.). The father of anatomy. Spine (Phila Pa 1976) 23: 1904-1914
  • Bay NSY, Bay BH. (2010). Greek anatomist herophilus: the father of anatomy. Anat Cell Biol. 2010 Dec;43(4):280-283. Full Text HTML | PDF of article
    • Abstract: One of the most stirring controversies in the history of Anatomy is that Herophilus, an ancient Greek anatomist and his younger contemporary, Erasistratus, were accused of performing vivisections of living humans. However, this does not detract from the fact that Herophilus has made phenomenal anatomical observations of the human body which have contributed significantly towards the understanding of the brain, eye, liver, reproductive organs and nervous system. It is notable that he was the first person to perform systematic dissection of the human body and is widely acknowledged as the Father of Anatomy. He has been hailed as one of the greatest anatomists that ever lived, rivaled only by Andreas Vesalius who is regarded as the founder of modern human anatomy.