The Greeks period of Alexandria

Together with the soldiers of Alexander the great conquered countries of Western and Central Asia, Egypt is widely penetrated Greek science and culture. At the mouth of the Nile winner founded the great city lying at the crossroads of important trade routes between South Europe and countries of the East. When Alexander's Empire collapsed, the Hellenistic city became the capital of the Egyptian dynasty of Ptolemies, famous for its patronage of scientific research.
To the III century BC, Alexandria became known center, where flourished mathematics and astronomy, physics and engineering, history, literature and various natural Sciences. Here appeared the rich Botanical and Zoological gardens. There was a famous library of Alexandria, with its book-wealth - 700000 handwritten scrolls and no less famous Museum, where he worked as a mathematician Euclid, geometry which you get in school, Archimedes, who discovered many of the laws of mechanics and physics, Creator of the first planetarium with moving the heavenly arch.
You're very familiar with the word "Museum", in Alexandria, it sounded as "Museyon" and meant institution. The Museum was both the Academy and the University where he worked and taught by the best scientists of that time, which was dominated by the desire for a specific knowledge. Not surprising that the Alexandrian school started experienced the study of human body by means of its anatomy.
It happened! Was finally overcome the age-old religious prohibition. Opened the prospect of no concern to study the human body, still almost unknown to the doctors. Looming ahead fascinating idea: to build a system of medical knowledge in a scientific manner.
When we talk about the largest doctors of that time - the first half of the III century BC, something called names Gerofila and Erasistratus. The two largest doctor of this era were not associates. Herophilus, court physician to the Emperor himself, the follower of idealistic philosophy of Plato, engaged in anatomical studies to find the soul, if the management body and to prove the validity of the theory of his teacher. Plato himself believed that health and disease in man are determined by supernatural beginning, his divine soul, so drugs, in his opinion, had no value: they replaced the rites, the divine hymns, music.
In search of the soul Herophilus did a lot of useful information. He skillfully describes three now known mater, has established a distinction between the cerebellum and cerebral hemispheres, investigated the structure of the medulla oblongata.
He studied first gut, adjacent to the stomach. Because of length equal to the transverse size of the twelve fingers, Herophilus called it duodenum. He first made a description of a human liver. Prior to that, he judged it by the liver animal.
Much attention Herophilus paid pulse and saw his nature in the activities of the heart, in the peculiarities of its abbreviations. With the help of water-clock Herophilus investigated pulse in a variety of conditions, set its properties is filling, the frequency, strength and rhythm in relation to various painful phenomena.
But did Herophilus the place where the soul lives? He searched her brain. Here attention anatomist attracted the bottom corner diamond-shaped holes, which Herophilus called "writing pen. He decided that it was here a thinking soul.
Erazistrat was a supporter of the philosopher-materialist Democritus. He did not recognize the existence of the soul. As Herophilus, he also studied the brain. Opening multiple branching nerve trunks, Erazistrat suggested that the brain and not the soul guides the movements of the person.
He is also the author of the hypothesis, which was finally confirmed many centuries later, in the era of research microscopes: the branching of blood vessels reaches a size that is not visible to the naked eye.
On the corpses of people and in experiments with animals Erazistrat studied digestive functions, described the heart valves. He distinguished between motor and sensory nerves, watched irritative stomach.
If the ancient doctors did not know the precise anatomical structure of the internal organs of the person, the less they presented the peculiarities of their work. But in this unknown region Erazistrat first made some valid assumptions, although they did not prevent him, like many doctors future generations, declare the unnecessary body, the value of which has remained unclear. Thus Erazistrat "dealt" with the spleen.
Work Alexandrians stand at the beginning of the anatomical and physiological studies of the human body. These first, even anecdotal, and part and wrong anatomical and physiological information needed clarifying, supplementing and further development.
The Gerofila and Erasistratus own pupils, but among them there was nobody who would worthily continued the works of the teachers.
Such a person was born four hundred years later. It was a Roman, his name was Claudius Galen. "Divinities", all Galen what it was for many generations of physicians. Claudius Galen, who did much for the development of medicine and, having not knowing, helped to delay its motion for a good fourteen centuries.