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”

15959 entries, 13943 authors and 1935 subjects. Updated: February 27, 2024

BELL, John

5 entries
  • 9833

Engravings, explaining the anatomy of the bones, muscles and joints.

Edinburgh: John Patterson for Bell & Bradfute, 1794.

Bell’s atlas of the bones, muscles and joints was issued as a separate work a year after his text, The Anatomy of the Bones, Muscles, and Joints. Bell’s illustrations are some of the most striking in the entire literature. “Certainly they have the immediacy of drawings made in the dissecting rooms of late Georgian Edinburgh. Some are quite gruesome and even perverted . . . In their context, however, they are admirable, for they were intended to be used to supplement the teacher’s demonstrations, to remind the student of what he had seen, and to be a guide when the student sat down with the prosected material. It was under the Bells . . . that the extramural schools brought the aspiring surgeon much closer to the cadaver, allowing the student opportunities for actual dissection” (Roberts & Tomlinson, The Fabric of the Body [1992] 491).

Subjects: ANATOMY › Anatomical Illustration, ART & Medicine & Biology
  • 401.3

The anatomy of the human body. 4 vols.

Edinburgh: Cadell & Davies, 17971804.

“The first great textbook contributed by the British school to modern anatomy” (Russell, No. 461).

Subjects: ANATOMY › 18th Century, ANATOMY › 19th Century, ANATOMY › Anatomical Illustration, ART & Medicine & Biology
  • 2926
  • 5581

The principles of surgery. 3 vols.

Edinburgh & London: T. Cadell & W. Davis, 18011808.

John Bell, the Scottish anatomist and brother of Charles Bell, is regarded as a founder of surgical anatomy. He was first to ligate the gluteal artery (Vol. I, pp, 421-26), and tied the common carotid and internal iliac. His illustrations were his own work, and were of a high standard.

Subjects: SURGERY: General , SURGERY: General › Notable Surgical Illustrations, VASCULAR SURGERY › Ligations
  • 1765

Letters on professional character and manners.

Edinburgh: J. Moir, 1810.

"A man of compassion, Bell made many enemies because he was outspoken about the unnecessary pain and suffering inflicted by incompetent surgeons practicing in Scotland. In 1800 he became involved in an unfortunate controversy with James Gregory (1753–1821), the professor of medicine at Edinburgh. Gregory in 1800 attacked the system whereby the fellows of the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh acted in rotation as surgeons at the Royal Infirmary, with the result that the younger fellows were excluded. Bell, who was among the number, composed an Answer for the Junior Members (1800), and ten years later published a collection of Letters on Professional Character and Manners, which he had addressed to Gregory. After his exclusion from the infirmary he ceased to lecture and devoted himself to study and practice. (Wikipedia article on John Bell, accessed 1-2020)

Subjects: Ethics, Biomedical
  • 7320

Observations on Italy.

Edinburgh: Blackwood, 1825.

Digital facsimile of the 1825 edition from the Internet Archive at this link. The second, posthumous, edition published in English in Naples by Fibreno in 1834 includes additional chapters by Bell that were not included in the first edition, as well as notes added by the translator of the edition in Italian. Digital facsimile of the 1834 edition from Google Books at this link.


Subjects: COUNTRIES, CONTINENTS AND REGIONS › Italy, VOYAGES & Travels by Physicians, Surgeons & Scientists