Skip to main content

The founder of modern anatomy was a Belgian

Andreas Vesalius, real name Andries van Wesele, was a Belgian doctor and anatomist. He was one of the founders of modern anatomy. Vesalius received a classical education in Leuven, the Pedagogium Castri for philosophy and law, and the Collegium Trilingue for Greek and Latin. During this five-year course, he already became interested in anatomy. For example, at this age, Vesalius would have been busy dissecting small animals.

Vesalius continued his studies at the University of Paris under Jacobus Sylvius and Guenther von Andernach (Guinterius). Here he studied medicine according to the teachings of Galen, a Greek / Roman doctor from the second century AD. This was the common doctrine at the time, and in fact little was done at universities other than studying his texts, even though they contradicted reality. The description of Galen was at that time assumed to be absolute truth, and differences with perceived reality were simply attributed to limited perception or to illusion.

Although Vesalius first followed the teachings of Galen, he slowly but surely realized that the actual observations are more important than what can be found in books. This development was quite innovative and was seen almost nowhere else before. Later Andreas Vesalius publishes a work in which he writes down the knowledge he has acquired with his anatomical activities. This book has the title De Humani Corporis Fabrica Libri Septem (Seven books about the construction of the human body). It is the first complete book about human anatomy.

In it, he refutes some of Galen's old views and unleashes a revolution in medical science. Through his knowledge of anatomy, Vesalius can show, among other things, that humans have a two-lobed liver and not a foxy-like one, as Galenus claims after his research on animals. Vesalius dedicates his work to Emperor Charles and is thereafter immediately appointed as personal physician to the Emperor. Later he is also the personal physician of the son of this emperor: Philip II.

In March 1564 Vesalius left for the Holy Land for religious and diplomatic reasons. In Sète he said goodbye to wife and child, who returned to Brabant. He himself traveled via Venice to Palestine, where he visited Jerusalem and with Boniface of Ragusa the plain of Jericho. On the way back, his ship was hit in a storm and spent several weeks at sea without much food or drink. When it finally landed on the Greek island of Zakynthos, Vesalius died there after a sudden illness. He probably died of scurvy and was buried in the local church of Santa Maria Delle Grazie. His grave was never found, which led to all sorts of wild speculations.

Popular posts from this blog

Belgian kids got to drink beer during their school lunch

There are almost 800 different kinds of beer in Belgium. One kind was very popular till the70's, it was even given to kids at school during their lunch break. Beer to kids? You must be kidding! Well, let's go a bit further into this. The beers we are talking about were so-called table beers, a kind of beer that was specially made for people who can't drink alcohol. So it's was a kind of alcohol-free beer, a kind, because there was some alcohol in it. between 1 and 4 percent alcohol. The most popular table beer was Piedboeuf, it had 1.1 percent alcohol in it and there was a lot of sugar added to make it as sweet as Coca-Cola. A good marketing strategy made that it was well distributed in almost all schools in Belgium. The reason was that it would be very healthy for them, because of the natural ingredients and of course the sugar. It would make them grow fast and strong. It would even be good for pregnant women and for women that were breastfeeding their baby'

How the Belgians founded New York

In order to avoid any confusion in this story, it is important to know that in the sixteenth century, the Netherlands covered a part of northern France and Lorraine, Belgium, Luxembourg, and the present Netherlands. Its inhabitants were called the Belgians, and the maps represented the country in the shape of a lion: the "Leo Belgicus". Besides, numerous maps from the sixteenth century showed this territory under the name of Belgium. The latter failed into disuse for the benefit of the Netherlands and only reappeared in 1789 on the occasion of the first Belgian revolution. In 1831 Belgium became an independent country. Today Belgium is a lot smaller and is divided into two big regions mostly based on the language they speak in that particular region. In the north, there is Flanders where they speak Flemish (Dutch) and in the south, there is the Walloon part where they speak French. Almost in the center and between the two parts is the region of the capital Brussels.

Belgium has the largest chocolate factory in the world

The largest chocolate factory in the world is located in Wieze, Belgium. Barry Callebaut produces around 270,000 tonnes a year, from cocoa bean to chocolate, making it the largest chocolate supplier in the world. Picture by Pixabay In Wieze you will also find the first of the seventeen Chocolate Academy centers that have since been distributed all over the world. A completely new building was recently opened, making the Chocolate Academy center in Wieze the largest center in the world. Picture by Pixabay The Belgian chocolate sector exports its quality chocolate to the entire world. Two-thirds of both the industrial chocolate and the end products are exported abroad. That's because there is a Belgian chocolate code developed in 2007. The Belgian chocolate code must ensure that the term 'Belgian chocolate' is only used for chocolate that actually comes from Belgium.