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Nathaniel Highmore - bibliography

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English surgeon and anatomist, born February 6, 1613, Fordingbridge, Hampton; died March 21, 1685, Sherborne, Dorset.


  • Corporis humani disquisitio anatomica; in qua sanguinis circulationem in quavis corporis particula plurimis typis novis ac aenigmatum medicorum succincta dilucidatione ornatam prosecuutus est.
    Hagai-Comitis [The Hague], Ex Officina Samuelis Broun, Bibliopolae Anglici, 1651
    The first English work to accept Harvey's ideas on the circulation.
  • The history of generation. Examining the several opinions of divers authors, especially that of Sir Kenelm Digby, in his discourse of bodies : with a general relation of the manner of generation, as well in plants as animals : with some figures delineating the first originals of some creatures ... : to which is joyned, A discourse of the cure of wounds by sympathy, or without any real applycation of medicines to the part affected, but especially by that powder, known chiefly by the name of Sir Gilbert Talbots powder.
    London, printed by R. N. for John Martin, 1651.
    Dedicated to Robert Boyle (1626-1691).
    Highmore's account of the development of the chick is the first embryological study based on microscopical examination, predating Marcello Malpighi (1628–1694) by more than twenty years. It was published within weeks of William Harvey's (1578-1657) book. Harvey and Highmore had collaborated on embryological research at Oxford since the 1640's.
    Referring to Sir Kenelm Digby, 1903-1665, generally considered a charlatan, and Gilbert Talbot. Talbot is probably the son of the Earl of Shrewsbury. He was the father of the Countess of Kent, known for The Countess of Kent's Powder, "good against all malignant and pestilent Diseases: French Pox, Small Pox, Measles and Plague".
  • Exercitationes duae, quarum prior de passione hysterica: altere de affectione hypochondriaca. Oxford 1660.
    In this work, Highmore concluded that hysteria was caused by a congestion of the blood in the heart and lungs. He was soon corrected, however, by Thomas Willis (1621-1675) who correctly surmised that it was a nervous disorder.
  • Discourse of the Cure of Wounds by Sympathy.
    1651. Printed with History of Generation.
  • Some considerations relating to D. Witties Defence of Scarborough Spaw.
    Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London, 1669, 4, no 56: 1128-1131.
  • Kenelm Digby:
    Discours sur la poudre de sympathie. Paris, 1659.
  • W. Harvey:
    Exercitationes de de generatione animalium; quibus accedunct quaedam de partu; de membranis ac humoribus, uteri; et de conceptione.
    London, 1651; Amsterdam, Elzevier, 1651.
  • Marcello Malpighi:
    De ovo incubato obsevationes. Londini, J. Martyn, 1673.
    First accurate description, from the microscopical point of view, of the chick embryo. Biographical:
  • Alumni Oxonienses.
    The members of the University of Oxford, 1500-1886. Their parentage, birthplace, and year of birth, with a record of their degrees. Compiled by J. Foster.
    8 volumes (covers 1500-1886). Oxford, 1887-1892. Volume 2, page 708.
  • A.T.H. Robb-Smith:
    Harvey at Oxford. Oxford Medical School Gazette, 1957, 9: 70-76.
  • J. Elise Gordon:
    The Highmore family of Dorset.
    Journal of the Sherborne History Society, 1966, 3: 2 ff.
  • J. Elise Gordon:
    Nathaniel Highmore, Physician and Anatomist, 1614-1685.
    The Practitioner, 1966, 196: 851-857.
  • J. Elise Gordon:
    Nathaniel Highmore. Midwife and Health Visitor. 1969, 5: 364 ff.
  • J. Elise Gordon:
    Nathaniel Highmore. In: Charles Coulston Gillispie, editor in chief: Dictionary of Scientific Biographies. Charles Scribner’s Sons. New York, 1970.
  • Robert G. Frank:
    Harvey and the Oxford Physiologists: A Study of Scientific Ideas.
    Berkeley, 1980, pp. 97-101.

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