Carl Wernicke

Picture of Carl Wernicke

Date of Birth: 05/15/1848

Age: 57

Birthplace: Tarnowskie Gory

Citizenship: Germany


Carl Wernicke was born in a small town Tarnovits (it Tarnowitz.) (Now the Polish Tarnowskie Gory, Poland.) In the official family - the administrator of the mining company. They lived in very humble circumstances, who after his father`s death, when Wernicke was 17, became worse. Then his family moved. Secondary education he got at the Royal Grammar School in Oppeln (it Oppeln, is now -. Opole) and the Gymnasium of St. Mary Magdalene in Breslau (German Breslau, now the -. Wroclaw).. Leaving Certificate Wernicke received in 1866.

With great difficulty, his mother was able to give him a medical degree in the University Breslauskom, though initially she wanted to give him an education so that he became a minister. Just before his final exam she also died.


Carl Wernicke was a long time to work in psychiatry. At first he studied Breslauskom University under the direction of G. Neumann in Allerhayligengospitale (Hospital of All Saints). Wernicke completed basic medical education, and he was awarded the title of doctor in Breslau in 1870. After that he worked 6 months in the ophthalmology department assistant. He then served as an assistant surgeon in the Fischer Franco-Prussian War.

Then he was trained in the psychiatric specialist-led Neumann. With him Wernicke was able to spend six months in Vienna with T. Meynert - a prominent neurologist, later a major impact on Freud. Meinert is very influenced by him and was almost the only one Wernicke mentioned in his lectures, and only his portrait hung on the wall in his clinic. In 1872, under his leadership, he made his first discovery - described the furrow that is present in some people within the temporal, parietal and occipital lobes.

The heyday of mature years

The development of medical career

Carl Wernicke became a specialist in psychiatry and assistant professor in Breslau in 1875, and in Berlin - in 1876. In 1876-1878 Wernicke was the first assistant in the clinic of psychiatry and nervous diseases Charite under the leadership of K.-F.-O Westphal in Berlin . Thus, Wernicke continued neuropsychiatric tradition started more B. Griesinger. In 1878, he started a private neuropsychiatric practice in Berlin, practicing until 1885, when he became an associate professor of neurology and psychiatry at Breslau. In the same year, he agreed to take the place of his teacher G. Neumann and became director of the psychiatric clinic Allerhayligengospitalya.

He got a chair at Breslau in 1890 and became head of the Department of Neurology and Psychiatry at the University Hospital. The next 14 years, it became the center of neuropsychological studies, which under his leadership worked HK Lipmann, K. Goldstein and Forster. This period of his life in general was very fruitful. In 1894 his works were published in the "Outline of Lectures on psychiatry clinic" it.