An Interactive Annotated World Bibliography of Printed and Digital Works in the History of Medicine and the Life Sciences from Circa 2000 BCE to 2022 by Fielding H. Garrison (1870-1935), Leslie T. Morton (1907-2004), and Jeremy M. Norman (1945- ) Traditionally Known as “Garrison-Morton”

16018 entries, 14076 authors and 1941 subjects. Updated: July 23, 2024

MALPIGHI, Marcello

10 entries
  • 760
  • 915

De pulmonibus observations anatomicae.

Bologna: B. Ferronius, 1661.

Discovery of the capillary circulation. Malpighi demonstrated that the pulmonary tissues are vesicular in nature and showed that the trachea ends in bronchial filaments. His De pulmonibus includes his demonstration of the capillary anastomosis between arteries and veins. This book, which is very rare, consists of two letters to Borelli describing observations made through the microscope on the lung of a living frog. In the second letter Malpighi described small channels connecting arteries with veins, the capillaries. This was the first proof that blood circulation occurred within a closed hydraulic system. The second edition was published as an appendix to Thomas Bartholin’s De pulmonum substantia et motu diatribe, 1663. It is republished in his Opera omnia, Lugduni Batavorum, 1687, ii, 331. A facsimile was published in Milan in 1958; English translation by J. Young in Proc. roy. Soc. Med., 1929-30, Sect. Hist. Med., 23, 1-11. See No. 915

  • 1230
  • 535

De viscerum structura exercitatio anatomica.

Bologna: J. Montij, 1666.

Includes (pp. 71-100) his essay, De renibus, in which he described the uriniferous tubules and the “Malpighian bodies”. The great detail and clarity of Malpighi’s description was unsurpassed until Bowman (No. 1231). The book also includes (pp. 125-26) the first description of Hodgkin’s disease. Strangely enough, Malpighi gives no illustration of the kidney in this work. For a reproduction and English translation  see Annals of Medical History 1925, 7, 245-6 


Subjects: Genito-Urinary System › Kidney: Urinary Secretion, NEPHROLOGY, NEPHROLOGY › Renal Anatomy, ONCOLOGY & CANCER › Lymphoma
  • 293

Dissertatio epistolica de bombyce.

London: J. Martyn & J. Allestry, 1669.

Malpighi’s work on the silkworm represents the first monograph on an invertebrate and records one of the most striking pieces of research work on his part. He dissected the silkworm under the microscope with great skill and observed its intricate structure; before the appearance of this work the silkworm was believed to have no internal organs.

Subjects: BIOLOGY, COMPARATIVE ANATOMY, MICROBIOLOGY, ZOOLOGY › Arthropoda › Entomology, ZOOLOGY › Illustration
  • 468

De ovo incubato observationes.

London: J. Martyn, 1673.

First accurate description, from the microscopical point of view, of the chick embryo. See No. 467.1. English translation in No. 534.1

  • 469

Dissertatio epistolica de formatione pulli in ovo.

London: J. Martyn, 1673.

This and the De ovo incubato (No. 468) placed the study of embryology on a sound basis, surpassing in accuracy all other contemporary work on the subject and foreshadowing some of the more important general lines of research in embryology. Malpighi's study of the development of the chicken in the egg went far beyond the work of Harvey and Fabrici, dealing with the internal structures to an unprecedented extent: his chief discoveries, illustrated in his four beautifully detailed plates, were the vascular area embraced by the terminal sinus, the cardiac tube and its segmentation, the aortic arches, the somites, the neural folds and neural tube, the cerebral and optic vesicles, the protoliver, the glands of the prestomach, and the feather follicles. According to Adelmann, Malpighi illustrated very clearly the three primary brain vesicles, and then the five secondary brain vesicles (along with the two optic vesicles).English translation in No. 534.1.

Subjects: EMBRYOLOGY, EMBRYOLOGY › Neuroembryology
  • 536

Anatome plantarum.

London: J. Martyn, 16751679.

Malpighi was the founder of microscopic anatomy and a pioneer in the study of plant development. He approached the subject through the study of plant tissues. His Appendix adds to the work on chick embryology Malpighi published in 1673.  As Adelmann noted (1966, p. 697), Malpighii's De ovo incubato work was submitted to Henry Oldenburg of the Royal Society in February, 1672 and the Appendix was submitted to him 8 months later, in October—although it was not published until 1675, along with the first part of the Anatome Plantarum. The second dissertation (the Appendix) was based on “an epochal advance in technique” that “was of enormous assistance to him”: the discovery that he could remove the blastoderm from the yolk and mount it on glass for examination under the microscope (Adelmann, 1966, p. 833 ff.).

Subjects: BOTANY, BOTANY › Botanical Illustration, EMBRYOLOGY, MICROBIOLOGY
  • 66

Opera omnia. 2 vols.

London: R. Scott, 1686.

Malpighi was the founder of histology. In 1660 he was the first to see the capillary anastomosis between the arteries and the veins, thus contributing to the completion of Harvey’s work on the circulation. Malpighi was also a great embryologist; his name is perpetuated in the “Malpighian bodies”, “Malpighi’s layer” of the epidermis, “Malpighi’s (splenic) corpuscles”. Malpighi was an excellent draughtsman but a poor writer. See No. 534.1 Marcello Malpighi and the evolution of embryology, by H. B. Adelmann.

Subjects: ANATOMY › Microscopic Anatomy (Histology), Collected Works: Opera Omnia, EMBRYOLOGY
  • 4299

Opera posthuma.

Amsterdam: G. Gallet, 1700.

Page 68: first description of leontiasis ossea.

Subjects: ORTHOPEDICS › Diseases of or Injuries to Bones, Joints & Skeleton › Congenital Diseases
  • 13184

Bibliografia malpighiana: Catalogo descrittivo delle opere a stampa di Marcello Malpighi e degli scritti che lo riguardano. By Carlo Frati.

Milan: F. Vallardi, 1897.

Subjects: BIBLIOGRAPHY › Bibliographies of Individual Authors, EMBRYOLOGY › History of Embryology
  • 534.1

Marcello Malpighi and the evolution of embryology. 5 vols.

Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1966.

Vol. 1 is an exhaustive biography of Malpighi; the remaining 4 volumes provide an extensive account of the development of embryology, and annotated English translations of Nos. 468 & 469.

Subjects: BIOGRAPHY (Reference Works) › Biographies of Individuals, BIOLOGY › History of Biology, EMBRYOLOGY › History of Embryology