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Bartholin, Caspar

1. Dates
Born: Malmo, Denmark, 12 feb. 1585
Died: Soro, Denmark, 13 July 1629
Dateinfo: Dates Certain
Lifespan: 44
2. Father
Occupation: Court Priest In Malmo
No information on financial status.
3. Nationality
Birth: Malmo, Denmark
Career: Denmark
Death: Soro, Denmark
4. Education
Schooling: Copenhagen; Wittenberg, M.A.; Basel, M.D.; Leiden, Padua.
Educated at Grammar School, 1588-96.
Matriculated at the University of Copenhagen in 1603, but transfered to Wittenberg in 1604.
M.A., 1605.
He then went on an academic grand tour. He was at Leiden, Basel, Padua, Rome, and then back at Basel.
M.D., 1610 at Basel.
D.D., 1626 awarded by the University of Copenhagen.
5. Religion
Affiliation: Lutheran
6. Scientific Disciplines
Primary: Anatomy, Medicine, Natural Philosophy
Works on anatomy: Anatomicae institutiones corporis humani and others. He also wrote extensively on medicine in general.
Works on natural philososphy: Systema physicum, Exercitatio de natura, De principiis rerum naturalium, and others.
7. Means of Support
Primary: Academia, Medicine
Secondary: Patronage
Professor eloquentia at the University of Copenhagen, 1611-13.
Professor of medicine at the University of Copenhagen, 1613-24.
Professor of theology at the University of Copenhagen, 1624-9.
Dean of the University, 1629 (for the second time).
He maintained a medical practice in Copenhagen that included the very upper echelons of society.
8. Patronage
Types: Government Official, Court Official
1611, Chancellor Christen Friis offered Bartholin the chair in Latin at the university.
1619, Bartholin received an order from the king to publish schoolbooks in the different philosophical subjects. As payment he received a canonry in the Roskilde diocese (which I categorize as income from patronage).
After 1610 Bartholin had Holger Rosenkranz (a powerful and influential orthodox theologian who was a member of the royal council, and whom I classify as a governmental official) as patron. It was because of this relationship that Bartholin took up theological studies again.
9. Technological Involvement
Type: Medical Practice
Bartholin worked as a physician in Copenhagen, treating the king, members of the nobility, and others.
In 1619, along with others of the medical faculty, he published "A Short Instruction" on how one should care for himself during the plague.
10. Scientific Societies
Memberships: None
He had connections with Felix Platter, Caspar Bauhin, Jacob Zwinger, Johannes Faber, and corresponded with many other scientists.
  1. V. Ingerslev, Danmarks laeger og laegevaesen, (Copenhagen, 1873- 74), pp.270-4. Dansk Biografisk Leksikon, (Copenhagen, 1979), 1, 470-2.
  2. Holger F. Roerdam, Kjoebenhauns Universitets Historle fra 1537 til 1621, (Copenhagen, 1873-77), 8, passim.
Not Available and Not Consulted
  1. Ole Peter Grell, "Caspar Bartholin and the Education of the Pious Physician," in Ole Peter Grell and Andrew Cunningham, eds. Medicine and the Reformation, (London, 1993), pp. 78-100.
Compiled by:
Richard S. Westfall
Department of History and Philosophy of Science
Indiana University

Note: the creators of the Galileo Project and this catalogue cannot answer email on geneological questions.

1995 Al Van Helden
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