William Harvey

William Harvey

William Harvey was born in Folkestone in 1578. After studying medicine at Caius College, Cambridge, he went to work at Padua.

In 1602 Harvey returned to London and began work as a doctor at St. Bartholomew's Hospital and in 1615 he was appointed Lumleian Lecturer at the College of Physicians.

Harvey became court physician to James I in 1618. Ten years later Harvey published On the Motion of the Heart and the Blood in Animals. In the book Harvey explained that after examining the heart and blood vessels of mammals he believed that the blood in the veins must flow only towards the heart. He also calculated the amount of blood that left the heart at each beat.

In 1640 Harvey became court physician to Charles II and was with the king during the Civil War and saw action at Edgehill.

During the Civil War Harvey continued his medical research and in 1651 published Essays on Generation in Animals. In the book he argued that every human being has its origin in an egg.

William Harvey died in 1657.