The Drawings of Santiago Ramón y Cajal

“They cannot scare me with their empty spaces
Between stars–on stars where no human race is.
I have it in me so much nearer home
To scare myself with my own desert places.”
-Robert Frost

Landscapes of the mind are these drawings of Santiago Ramón y Cajal in an exhibit called The Beautiful Brain, most recently exhibited at MIT.

A passage from the exhibition catalogue notes the poetic thoughts he had about the scientific discoveries he was making.

The hippocampus:
Cajal highlights the prominent role of pyramidal neurons in the hippocampus (in this drawing). The pyramidal neurons are the darkly colored cells (a and b) whose cell bodies lie near the outside of the hippocampus and whose dendrites extend toward the center. Cajal waxes poetic about hippocampal pyramidal neurons in his autobiography: “[The] pyramidal cells, like the plants in a garden – as it were, a series of hyacinths – are lined up in hedges which describe graceful curves.”

Just dwell in the beauty of these lovely pieces.


More about Santiago Ramón y Cajal here and here.