Anatomy Atlas Part 21 – Heart

Heart. An organ whose importance was known throughout the history, but whose real function was not.

©Charly, all rights reserved. Click for full size.

The one interesting fact about heart that springs to my mind is that one of the most important discoveries into how it actualy functions was done by a Czech anatomist Jan Evangelista Purkyně who discovered the specialized impluse-conveying neurons in 1837 (but I had to look that date up, since I have terrible memory for numbers). They bear his name “Purkynje fibers”.

I wonder whether kids in other nations around the world get to hear his name when learning about heart.


  1. Nightjar says

    I don’t think I studied enough anatomy to have learned about Purkynje fibers at all, let alone their discoverer. At least I don’t remember it.

    Is “cor” Czech for heart?

  2. Ice Swimmer says

    I don’t remember the name coming up in the biology lessons at school and I haven’t had any anatomy or biology since matriculation examination. The biology books in Finland were quite unconcerned about who discovered what, AFAIR.

  3. rq says

    It’s why the Latvians made it easy and say “sirds” (fem., even though it ends in -s). :)

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