Brunner, John Conrad

, a Swiss physician and anatomist of eminence, was born at Diessenhofen, the 16th of January, 1653. After passing through the usual school education, he was sent, at the age of sixteen, to Strasburgh, where, applying assiduously to the study of physic and anatomy, he was created doctor in medicine in 1672. | For his thesis, he gave the anatomy of a child with two heads, which he met with. He now went to Paris, and attended the schools and hospitals there with such assiduity, as to attract the notice, and gain him the intimacy of Dionis and du Verny, who were present while he made the experiments on the pancreas, which enabled him, some years after, to publish a more accurate description of that viscus, than had been before given, under the title of “Experimenta nova circa Pancreas. Accedit Diatribe de Lympha et genuine Pancreatis usu,” Leidse, 1682, 8vo. He proved that the fluid secreted by the pancreas is not necessary to digestion, and that an animal may live after that viscus is taken out of the body, having tried the experiment upon a dog, which perfectly recovered from the operation. On quitting Paris, he came to London, and was introduced to Dr. Willis, Lower, and Henry Oldenburg, secretary to the royal society. From England he passed to Holland, and studied for some months at Leyden. At Amsterdam he visited Swammerdam and Ruysch, with whom he afterwards corresponded. Returning home he was made professor of medicine at Heidelberg, and first physician to the elector palatine, who conferred on him the title of baron de Brunn in Hamerstein. About the same time, he niarried one of the daughters of the celebrated Wepfer, and was elected honorary member of the academia naturae curios, in return for some ingenious dissertations which he had communicated to them. In 1688 he publised “Dissertatio Anatomica de Glandula pituitaria,” Heidelb. 4to. From this time he became in such great request for his knowledge and success in practice, that he was, in succession, consulted by most of the princes in Germany. Among others, in 1720, he was sent for to Hanover, to attend the prince of Wales, afterwards king George II. In 1715 he published at Heidelberg, “Glandula Duodeni sen Pancreas secundum detectum,” 4to, which was only an improved edition of his “De Glandulis in Duodeno Intestino detectis,” which had been before twice printed. There are some other lesser works, the titles and accounts of which are given by Haller, in his Bib. Anat. In the latter edition of Wepfer’s works are given dissections by our author, of the heads of some persons who died of apoplexy, of whom he had had the care. Though early afflicted with gravel, and in the latter part of his life with gout, he continued to attend to the calls of his patients, though living | a great distance from his residence. When in his 74th year, he went in great haste to Munich, to attend the elector Maximilian Emanuel; on his return, he was seized with a fever, which, in a few days, put an end to his life, October 2, 1727. 1