Download Death Defied: The Anatomy Lessons of Frederik Ruysch by Luuc Kooijmans. Translated by Diane Webb PDF

By Luuc Kooijmans. Translated by Diane Webb

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16 AW 1093. the anatomy lesson 19 colleague at the registry of the States General. But while the career of Ruysch’s father had been cut short by his untimely death, Stalpart’s father had risen to the office of burgomaster. Cornelis Stalpart had gone to Leiden to study medicine, and soon after obtaining his doctorate, had become a lecturer in anatomy in The Hague. Frederik Ruysch had become an apothecary in order to secure a livelihood, but now he was making up for lost time. He soon became known for his anatomical skills, which he demonstrated in private lessons.

The anatomy lesson 41 He had pointed out the fallibility of the senses (and hence of empirical data), but human powers of reason appeared to be equally fallible. Clearly, the potential of ‘mathematical reasoning’ had been overestimated. While retaining logical reasoning and the mechanistic world view, scientists gradually tended more towards empiricism, since it had proved important to verify theory with observation. When Frederik Ruysch was a student, various schools of thought found favour among teachers and students alike.

Extremely distrustful of people with a university degree, he preferred to show off his art to lay people, especially those of some consequence. The physicians who visited him therefore took care to pass themselves off as laymen, preferably of high standing. The Leiden student Heinrich Meibom and a friend pretended to be courtiers when they went to see De Bils, thus persuading him to perform a vivisection on a dog. He showed them several organs while operating on the dog with little loss of blood.

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