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BERNARD


497


BERNARD


Claude Beknabd


Bernard, Claud-e. — French physiologist, b. 12 July, 1.S13 at Saint Julien near Villefranche, France; d. at Paris, 10 February, 1878. His father was the proprietor of a vineyard and his early education, wliich was begun by the village cure, was obtained at the Jesuit college in Villefranche. Going to Lyons to contmue liis studies, he be- came instead a pharmacist's as- sistant. While here, his literary ambitions led him to write a come- dy, "La rose du Rhone", which was put on the .stage. Encour- ajedby its recep- tion, he wrote a live act drama ,md setting out In 1834 for Paris, submitted it to Saint Marc Gi- rardin, the well- known critic. The latter found evidence of literary ability in the young author's work, but advised him to study medicine as a more certain means of securing a livelihood than literature. Bernard followed this counsel, which ]jroved the turning point in his career, and the play "Arthur de Bretague" was not published until long after his death in 1886.

Bernard devoted himself particularly to anatomy and physiology but, being of a retiring disposition laid somewhat awkward in manner, he did not impress his professors or fellow students with the power of which he was later to give proof. In 1839, he was appointed interne to Magendie, professor of medicine at the College de France, and one of the physicians of the Hotel Dieu, noticing his skill in dissection, soon made him his prcparaleur, or lecture assistant. Tliis latter appointment, in spite of many disadvantages, proved a fortimate one, and Bernard now began the researches in physiology which made him famous. His first important work was a study of the pancreas and its functions. This was fol- lowed by the discovery of the glycogenic function of the liver — perhaps his most noteworthy schieve- nient, particularly on account of its bearing on cur- rent views in biology. It had been supposed by biologists that the animal, unlike the plant, could not build up complex compounds within itself, but could only utilize those furnished by the plant such as carbohydrates, proteids, etc., resolving them into constituents suitetl to its own needs. Bernard under- took the task of tracing out the various transforma- tions of food stuffs within the animal organism, be- ginning with the carbohydrates; and he not only found, contrary to the accepted view, that sugar was formed in the liver, but he was also able to isolate a substance from the hepatic tissue which, though not sugar, was converted by fermentation into dextrose. He made a special study of its properties and called it "glycogen".

Bernard did not pursue his investigations in this field any farther, but took up the study of the in- fluence of the ner\-ous system on animal heat. This led to the discovery of the vaso-motor system. He found that severing the cervical sympathetic on one side of the neck of a rabbit caused a sensible rise in the temperature of the affected region. Further ex- periments on the sub-maxillary and other glands showed, as he announced to the Academic des Sciences, in 1858, that when the gland is actively


secreting, the venous blood issuing from it is red. Two sets of nerves control the action of the gland, stimulation of the chorda tympani making the venous blood red, while stimulation of the sympa- thetic nerve makes it darker than usual. He was thus able to formulate the statement: "the sympa- thetic nerve is the constrictor of the blood vessels; the chorda tympani is their dilator", and it may be said with truth that all subsequent work on the vaso- motor system has been based on these researches. The physiological effects of poisons, particularly ol curare and carbon monoxide, also engaged Bernard's attention. He found that the former — an arrow poison employed by South American Indians — ren- dered the motor nerves inactive, while the sensorj- and central nervous system remained intact. His analysis of the action of the latter showed that it instantly replaces the oxygen of the red blood cor- puscles, while it cannot of itself be subsequently replaced by oxygen.

In 1855 Bernard succeeded Magendie as pro- fessor at the College de France, having been ap- Eointed his deputy as early as 1847. In 1862 his ealth failed and it was not until 1870 that he fully recovered. In his later years he made the ac- quaintance of Napoleon III, who was much im- pressed by him and established two well-equipped laboratories for him — one at the Sorborme, the other at the Musde d'Histoire Naturelle. In 1867 the emperor made him a member of the Senate, and in 1868 he was admitted to the Academic des Sciences. He devoted himself to scientific work and the re- vision of his published lectures until sliortly before his death. He received a public funeral, at the ex-

Eense of the State, from the Cathedral of Notre Dame, eing the first Frenchman of science to be thus honoured. A statue was erected in his honour in 1886 in the court of the College de France, and also, in 1894, in the court of the Faculty of Medicine at Lyons. Bernard's chief contribution to physiological literature, apart from his original papers presented to various societies, are his "Lemons", in seventeen volumes, upon various topics in physiology. These comprise his lecture courses which were reported by his students and revised by himself.

Foster, Claude Bernard (New York. 1899); Walsh, Mukira of Modem Medicine (New York, 1907).

Henry M. Brock.

Bernard Gtiidonis, Inquisitor of Toulouse against the Albigenses and Bishop of Lodeve, b. at Roydrcs (Limousin) in 1261; d. at Lauroux (H^rault), 30 De- cember, 1331. He was one of the most prolific writers of the Middle Ages. He entered the Domini- can Convent at Limoges, and made his profession in 1280. Ten years later he was made Prior of Albi, and subsequently at Carcassonne, at Castres, and at Limoges. In recompense for his services as Inquisitor he was made Bishop of Tuy in Galicia, by Pope John XXII, and a year later Bishop of Loddve. In spite of his manifold occupations he wrote numerous works of great importance such as: "Fleurs des chroniques", which is a universal chronicle from the time of Our Lord to 1331; "Chronique abr^gfe des empereurs", "Chronique des rois de France", "Cata- logue des Eveques de Limoges", "Traits sur les saints du Limousin", "Traits sm- I'histoire de I'ab- baye de St. Augustin de Limoges", "Chronique des Prievu's de Grandmont" (as far as 1318)," "Chronique dps Prieurs d'Artige" (as far as 1313), "Chronique des Eveques de Toulouse" (as far as 1327), "Sanctoral ou Miroir des saints", "Vie des saints", "Trait6 sur les soixante-douze disciples et sur les apotres", "Traits sur I'dpoque de la calibration des conciles", "Compilation historique siu- I'ordre des Domini- cains", "Pratique de I'inquisition". This last is practically his most important work. It is an expose of the prerogatives and duties of the inquisitor: its