Jean-Martin Charcot (1825–1893) laid the foundations of modern neurology. The lectures he gave at La Salpêtrière Hospital in Paris attracted a large number of visitors from all over the world. Some of them transcribed these clinical lessons, translating and publishing them when returning home. This article discusses the contribution of some Italian physicians (Gaetano Rummo, 1853–1917; Domenico Miliotti; Giulio Melotti, 1857–19?; and Augusto Tebaldi, 1833–1895), who were pioneers in disseminating the ideas and discoveries of Charcot. The early Italian translations were based on personal handwritten notes and memories, not relying on official French versions personally revised or edited by Charcot himself. As such, their veracity cannot always be verified, particularly in the lack of other independent works reporting details on the same lectures. However, the Italian transcriptions providing information which cannot be found elsewhere in Charcot’s corpus of works represent an invaluable and a unique source for fully understanding some theories by the French neurologist. Furthermore, they are the first documents providing original materials related to Charcot’s teaching translated in a foreign language. The first Italian publications that included photographs of patients were deeply influenced by and clearly modeled on the famous volumes of the Iconographie photographique de la Salpêtrière and further contributed to the early dissemination of Charcot’s theories.
“Spreading the word of the master”: the contribution of Italian physicians in the early dissemination of Jean-Martin Charcot’s theories / Brigo, F.; Lattanzi, S.; Martini, M.; Bragazzi, N.; Nardone, R.; Walusinski, O.. - In: NEUROLOGICAL SCIENCES. - ISSN 1590-1874. - (2020). [10.1007/s10072-020-04606-z]