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Victor Albrecht von Haller - bibliography

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Swiss biologist, physiologist and writer, born October 16, 1708, Bern; died December 12, 1777, Bern.


  • Experimenta et dubia de ductu salivali Coschwitziano.
    Doctoral dissertation, Leyden, 1727.
  • Die Alpen. 1729. First published in Versuch Schweizerischer Gedichte, 1732.
  • Versuch Schweizerischer Gedichte. Bern: bey Niclaus Emanuel Haller, 1732.
    Later authorised editions: Bern 1734, Bern 1743, Göttingen 1748, 1749, 1751, 1753, 1762, 1768, Bern 1777. The publisher (1732) was Haller's brother.
  • Hermanni Boerhaave Praelectiones academicae in proprias institutiones rei medicae.
    Editit, et notas additit, Albertus Haller, 7 volumes. Göttingen, 1739-1744.
  • Anatomen cadaveris virilis indicit ad diem XXIII Februar. Göttingen 1741.
    This brief and little-known anatomical work first appeared in the 1738 edition of Jan Swammerdam's (1637-1680) book on respiration and was included in Haller's later anatomical treatises.
    Jan Swammerdam: Tractatus physico-anatomico-medicus de respiratione, usuque pulmonum. First edition, Leyden, 1667.
  • Enumeratio methodica stirpium Helvetiae indigenarum. Göttingen, 1742.
  • Icones anatomicae quibus praecipuae aliquae partes corporis humani delineatae proponutur et arterianum potissimum historia continuatr.
    8 parts, Gottingae, A. Vandenhoeck, 1743-1756.

  • De respiratione experimenta anatomica, quibus aëris inter pulmonem et pleuram absentiae demonstratur et musculorom intercostalium internorum officium adseritur.
    2 parts. Gottingae, A. Vandenhoeck, 1746-1747.
    First investigation of the action of the intercostal muscles in respiration.
  • Primae lineae physiologiae in usum praelectionum academicarum.
    Gottingae, A. vandenhoeck, 1747. English editions as First Lines of Physiology, 1754 and later.
    Although Haller had many interests and talents, he was cheifly a physiologist, and one of his greatest contributions to physiology was his demonstration that irritability is a specific property of all muscles tissue and that sensibility is the exlusive property of nervous tissue. This work, first published in 1747, contains many of the ideas that Haller later developed more fully in Elementa physiologiae corporis humani, including his resonance theory, similar to that already advanced by Duverney and to that of Helmholtz more than one hundred years later.
  • Opuscula botanica. Göttingen, 1747.
  • Die Ewigkeit.
  • De aortae venaeque cavae gravioribus quibusdam morbis.
    Gottingae, A. Vandenhoeck, 1749.
    Also in Albrecht von Haller’s (1708-1777) Disputationum anatomicarum selectarum, Göttingen 1750; volume 5 pp 233-259. The latter contains his description of the Ovula Nabothi.
    In this treatise Martin Naboth (1675-721) maintained that ovarian sclerosis and tubal blockages could be causes of infertility.
  • Opuscula anatomica. Göttingen, 1751.
  • Hermanni Boerhaave Methodus studii medici emasculata et accesionibus locupletata ab Alberto ab Haller. Amsterdam, 1751.
    The title has also been given as: Boerhaavii methodus studii medici . . .
  • De partibus corporis humani sensilibus et irritabillibus.
    Commentarii Societatis Regiae Scientiarium Gottingensis, 1753, 2: 114-158.
  • Deux mémoires sur le mouvement du sang, et sur les effets de la saignée.
    Lausanne and Paris: 1756.
    This work on the heart stamps Haller as a first-class investigator and experimental physiologist. His findings are based on animal experimentation and the experiments are carefully documented.
  • Elementa physiologiae corporis humani.
    8 volumes. Volume 1-5 Lausanne, vols. 6-8 Bern. 1757-1766.
    Historians agree that, of the vast amount of scientific literature produced by this gifted man, this eight-volume work is his greatest and most important contribution. The works has had a lasting influence on the development of anatomy and physiology. In it Haller examined the entire body and each section provided anatomical description along with data on the structure, physical properties, and chemical composition of the part under consideration. There are many physiological discoveries in this book that were forgotten, only to be rediscovered again years later. Two notable examples are the myogenic theory og the heart beat and the role of the bile in the digestion of fat.
  • Deux mémoires sur la formation des os, fondés sur des experiences.
    Lausanne 1758.
    Haller, in this work, first affirmed that bones form from cartilaginous origin and not from periosteum.
  • Sur la formation de coeur dans le poulet.
    2 volumes. Lausanne, Bousquet, 1758.
    The firs volume of this book is an excellent example of Haller's precise and detailed investigative methods, which are revealed here as he observed and recorded hourly the development of the vascular system in the hen's egg. The second volume deals with the muscular action and physiology of the respiratory system in humans and experimental animals.
    32: Haller devised a numerical method to demonstrate the rate of growth of the foetus, showing that the rate of growth is relatively rapid in the earlier stages but that the tempo gradually decreases. He calculated the rate of growth of the chick and of the human embryo.
  • Opera minora emendata, acuta, et renovata. 3 volumes. Lausanne 1763-1768.
    In these three volumes on anatomy, reproduction, and pathology, respectively, Haller collected various of his shorter writings which were scattered in other works and journals. They represent, with his Icones anatomicae, what he considered to be among his best works. The numerous plates contain his highly exact, clear, and striking representations of anatomic preparations.
  • Historia stirpum indigenarum Helvetiae inchoata.
    3 volumes bound in 3, folio. Bern, Societatis Typographicae, 1768.
    In this work Haller describes more than 2486 species of plants, of which many new. He provided a geographical description of the country, together with a survey of the changing vegetation cover as influenced by climate, and illustrated the work with extraordinarily beautiful plates. The book brought him universal recognition, and as a result several plants were named after him.
    In this work Haller describes more than 2486 species of plants, of which many new. He provided a geographical description of the country, together with a survey of the changing vegetation cover as influenced by climate, and illustrated the work with extraordinarily beautiful plates. The book brought him universal recognition, and as a result several plants were named after him.
    A new edition was published by Jakob Samuel Wyttenbach (1748-1830) as Icones Plantarum Helvetiae, ex ipsus Historia Stirpum Helveticarum . . . Additis notis Editoris (Jac. Sam. Wyttenbach). Bernae, Societatis Typographicae, 1795. This edition also cormprises material assembled by Haller for a new edition and it is rarer than the original one.
  • Usong. Eine morgenländische Geschichte. 1771.
  • Bibliotheca botanica. Qua scripta ad rem herbarium facientia a rerum initiis recensentur.
    2 volumes. Zürich : Tiguri, apud Orell, Gessner, Fuessli et socc. 1771-1772.
  • Ode sur les Alpes. Geschichte von der Schönheit und dem Nutzen der Schweizerischen Alpen.
    Bern, Brounner & Haller, 1773. 2002: offered for Sw.f. 1850.
  • Alfred, König der Angelsachsen. 1773.
  • Fabius und Cato. 1774.
  • Bibliotheca chirurgica. 2 vols. Bern and Basel, 1774-1775.
    In addition to his great achievements in anatomy, physiology and botany, Haller found time during the last ten years of his life to prepare comprehensive retrospective bibliographies of the known literature on botany (1771), surgery (the present work), anatomy, and medicine (1776). They are still of considerable reference value in their respective fields and are landmarks in medical bibliography. These bibliographies contain an exhaustive summary of the important works ineach field and are written in the clear, compact style so characteristic of Haller. Haller also includes a biographical sketch of each author and occasionally adds other bits of information about the author or work.
  • Bibliotheca anatomica qua scripta ad anatomen et physiologiam. facientia a rerum initiis recensentur.
    2 volumes. Zürich : Orell, Gessner, Fuessli, 1774-1777.
    Reprinted, Hildesheim, G. Olms, 1969.
    This bibliography of nearly all of the previously written work on anatomy is typical of Haller's erudition, thoroughness, and energy. He summarizes at least twenty percent of the works listed, some of the summaries running to a page or more, and comments on almost all of the important works.

  • Briefe über einige Einwürfe nochlebender Freygeister wieder die Offenbarung. 3 parts. 1775-1777.
  • De partium corporis humani praecipuarum fabrica et functionibus opus quinquaginta annorum.
    8 volumes; Ex Prelis Societatum Typographicarum Bernae, 1778 (Bern and Lausanne).
  • Bibliotheca medicinae practicae.
    4 volumes, Basel, J. Schweighauser; Bern, E. Haller, 1776-1788. Biographical
  • Ludwig Hirzel:
    Haller’s Leben und Dichtungen.
    In Hirzel’s edition of Haller’s poems, Frauenfeld, 1882.
  • Ludwig Hirzel:
    Albrecht Haller’s Tagebücher seiner Reisen nach Deutschland, Holland und England 1723-1727. Leipzig, 1883.
  • Stephen d’Irsay:
    Albrech von Haller. Leipzig, Georg Thieme, 1930.
  • Richard Toellner:
    Albrecht von Haller (1708-1777).
    In: Dietrich vin Engelhardt and Fritz Hartmann, publishers: Klassiker der Medizin. München, Verlag C. H. Beck, 1991: 245-261.
  • August Hirsch (1817-1894), publisher:
    Biographisches Lexikon der hervorragenden Ärzte aller Zeiten und Völker.
    2nd edition. Berlin, Urban & Schwarzenberg, 1929.
    First published in 6 volumes 1884-1888. 3rd edition, München 1962.
  • Erich Hintzsche (1900-1975):
    Haller, (Victor) Albrecht von. In: Charles Coulston Gillispie, editor in chief: Dictionary of Scientific Biographies. Charles Scribner’s Sons. New York, 1970. Volume 6, pp. 61-67. Works by others:
  • Georg Daniel Coschwitz:
    Ductus salivalis novus, per glandulas maxillares, sublinguales, linguameque excurrens, cum vasis lymphaticis variis communicans, et in lingua locum excretionis habens. Nuperrime detectus, et publico adjectis figuris aenis exhibitus.
    Halle, 1724.
    Haller proved that what Coschwitz had discovered was in fact a blood vessel, not a salivary gland.

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