Malpighi's lung observations, 1661

Malpighi's lung observations, 1661

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Credit: BRITISH LIBRARY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Malpighi's lung observations. 17th-century illustration of the lungs of a frog. These observations were published in 'De pulmonibus observationes anatomicae' (1661) by Italian biologist Marcello Malpighi (1628-1694). Although they were from a frog, Malpighi extended his findings to human lungs. He showed that the lungs had microscopic structure and he produced drawings of the pulmonary capillaries and alveoli. At top, the artwork shows the lungs dissected to show the alveoli (left) and the capillaries (right). Below this are the pulmonary capillaries in a diagram of an alveolus that has been dissected and opened up.

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