The Secret Life of the Brain
History of the Brain 3-D Brain Anatomy Mind Illusions Scanning the Brain The Episodes:
History of the Brain
Ancient Egyptian vessel

Ancient Egyptian vessel.

The ancient Egyptians believe that the heart is the most important organ in the body.
To them, it is the essence of life as well as the source of good and evil. This reverence for the heart is seen in the Egyptian funerary guide, The Book of the Dead, which instructs that a dead man's heart must be weighed against feathers to determine the balance of good to evil it contains. The brain, on the other hand, is considered a minor, unimportant organ. They discard it during the embalming process even as they ceremoniously preserve other organs for mummification. Despite this decided lack of interest, an ancient Egyptian record known as the Edwin Smith Surgical Papyrus contains the first written account of the anatomy of the brain. Written by an unknown physician, the papyrus documents twenty-six cases of brain injury along with various treatment recommendations.


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