Bauhaus-Universität Weimar

are felt distinctly, not as one sensation; on the contrary, the two 
being conveyed to the sensorium give rise in it to two distinct sensa¬ 
tions. In the eyes or optic nerves, however, we meet with the 
anomaly that certain fibres of the one nerve with certain fibres of 
the other have but one and the same sensation, hence the phenomenon 
of single vision with two eyes. 
The occurrence of motions consequent on sensitive impressions 
has been known, not merely to the earlier physiologists, but to the 
cultivators of medicine in all ages. Physiologists have generally 
followed Willis in ascribing them to nervous communication by 
means of the ganglionic or sympathetic nerve, which hence ac¬ 
quired the latter epithet. Comparetti {Occursus Medici. Venetiis, 
1780,) wrote an entire work, for the purpose of explaining the 
morbid consensual phenomena by communications between nerves. 
These views were adopted by most physiologists; and even very 
recently, (see Tiedeman, Zeitschrift für Physiol, i. 1825,) new 
anatomical facts relating to the nerves have received applications 
agreeing with them.* 
Some even of the earlier physiologists, however, as Haller, Cul¬ 
len,! Whytt,f Monro,§ and others, were dissatisfied with this theory 
of sympathies. Whytt and Cullen believed the phenomena to take 
place through the intervention of the sensorium, and to be conse¬ 
quent on sensations. It is but very recently, however, that these 
sympathetic motions have been investigated in an exact and ex¬ 
perimental manner. Several important facts, unfavourable to the 
hypothesis of these phenomena being dependent on the sympathetic 
nerve, were noticed by Mayo (Anatom. and Physiol. Com¬ 
mentaries,,) in 1823. It had been usual to attempt to account for 
the fact of the motions of the iris being determined by the influence 
of light on the retina by communications supposed to exist between 
* The sympathetic movements seem to have been generally attributed by 
physiologists in Germany, during the last few years, to nervous communications; 
such, however, has not been the case in this country. The opposite view has 
been adopted by the modern English authors who have published-original works 
on Physiology. See Dr. Alison’s Outlines of Physiology, 1831, and Transact, 
of the Med. Chir. Society of Edinb. vol. ii.; Dr. Bostock’s Elements of Physio¬ 
logy, 1827, vol. iii. p. 224, and Mr. Mayo’s Outlines of Physiol. 2d edit. 1829, 
pages 339 and 344. 
I Institutes of Medicine, pt. i. 
On Sympathy and Nervous Diseases (in the German edition of Whytt’s 
works, p. 241.)—An Essay on the Vital and other Involuntary Motions. Edinb. 
1751, p. 248. 
§ On the Nervous System. (Leipzic edition. 1787.)


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