William Harvey (1653), a century before the discovery of oxygen demonstrated
    through dissection of cold- and warm-blooded animals that blood circulates through
    the body by the pumping action of the heart:

    "It is absolutely necessary to conclude that the blood is in a state of
    ceaseless motion; that this the act or function which the heart performs by
    means of its pulse; and that is the sole and only end of the motion and
    contraction of the heart."

    In his investigations into the origins of life and fetal development, Harvey further
    pointed out the meaning and importance of pulsations of the umbilical cord:

    "Moreover, it is a sure way to know whether the Infant that sticketh in the
    birth be alive, or not, by the pulsation of the Vmbilical Arteries. But most
    certain it is, that those Arteries are not moved by the virtue or operation of
    the Mothers, but of his own proper Heart: For they keep a distinct time and
    pawze, from the Mothers pulse: which is easily experimented, if you lay one
    hand upon the Mothers wrest, and the other on the Infants Navel-string.
    Nay in a Casarean Section, when  the Embryo's have been yet involved in
    the membrane called Chorion, I have oftentimes found (even when the
    Mother was extinct, and stiffe almost with cold) the Vmbilical Arteries
    beating, and the Foetus himself lusty."

    Harvey, William. Anatomical exercitations concerning the generation of living creatures to which are
    added particular discourses of births and of conceptions, &c.London : Printed by James Young, for
    Octavian Pulleyn, and are to be sold at his shop at the sign of the Rose in St. Pauls Church-yard,
    1653. From Early English Books Online http://eebo.chadwyck.com/.
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Eileen Nicole Simon

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