Esquirol, Jean-Étienne-Dominique

   (1772–1840)
   Founder of the French tradition of psychiatric nosology, Esquirol was born in Toulouse into a noble family—his father was president of the chamber of commerce—and began his medical studies there in 1792. In 1799, he went up to Paris and started auditing Philippe Pinel’s courses at the Salpêtrière hospice. "It was that day that decided his fate," wrote psychiatrist René Semelaigne (1855–1934) many years later in his dictionary of French psychiatrists. "These two elite beings felt their mutual attraction to each other. Esquirol became Pinel’s favorite student. Each day, Esquirol went to the Salpêtrière, accompanying his chief on rounds, helping him in his work. It was Esquirol who wrote [Pinel’s] treatise of Clinical Medicine (La Médecine clinique), the first edition of which came out in 1802 (I, p. 126). As a result of all these interruptions, only in 1805 at age 33 did Esquirol manage to defend his doctoral dissertation on The Passions . . . as a Cause of Mental Illness (Les Passions considérées comme causes . . . de l’aliénation mentale) and graduate with an M.D. He argued, as Pinel had done, for the gentle treatment of those with mental illness and said they were not unlike patients with other kinds of medical illnesses. In 1811, Esquirol joined Pinel on the medical staff of the Salpêtrière, where he remained until 1825 when the post of chief-physician at the national asylum in the Paris suburb of Charenton became vacant. Meanwhile, in 1802 Esquirol began taking a few wealthy patients into his private house across from the Salpêtrière. In 1827, he moved this establishment to vast new grounds at Ivry, and in his later years divided his time between Charenton and his private sanatorium, where he regularly entertained his students with memorable meals. (Semelaigne remembered Jacques-Joseph Moreau, called Moreau de Tours [1804–1884], at age 80, speaking almost with tears in his eyes of those Sunday dinners.) Although Esquirol was much involved with medical education (he initiated France’s first course of psychiatry lectures in 1817) and with the reform of France’s asylums, in retrospect he has mainly been remembered for his attempts to refine psychiatric diagnosis with such terms as "monomania" and "lypemania" (see Psychosis: Emergence: Esquirol’s monomania, [1816, 1838]; Depression: Emergence: lypemania [1820]). In a three-volume work, On Mental Illness (Des maladies mentales), published in 1838, he reprinted a number of his earlier essays, bringing some of them up to date. Esquirol really represents the beginning of all classification in psychiatry, given that William Cullen had so little experience and classified on the basis of abstract principles.

Edward Shorter. 2014.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Esquirol, Jean-Étienne-Dominique — (1772 1840)    physician    A noted physician who dealt with mental illnesses, Jean Étienne Dominique Esquirol was born in Toulouse. He was a student of philippe pinel and was doctor of medicine at La Salpêtrière, and chief inspector for the… …   France. A reference guide from Renaissance to the Present

  • Esquirol, Jean-Étienne-Dominique — ▪ French psychiatrist born Feb. 3, 1772, Toulouse, France died Dec. 12, 1840, Paris       early French psychiatrist who was the first to combine precise clinical descriptions with the statistical analysis of mental illnesses.       A student of… …   Universalium

  • Jean-Etienne Dominique Esquirol — Jean Étienne Esquirol Jean Étienne Dominique Esquirol (Toulouse 4 janvier 1772[1] Paris 12 décembre 1840) est un psychiatre français, considéré comme le père de l hôpital psychiatrique français : il fit en effet voter la… …   Wikipédia en Français

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  • Jean-Étienne Dominique Esquirol — (1772 1840) was a French psychiatrist.He was born in Toulouse, Occitania, France. He studied there and completed his education at Montpellier. He came to Paris in 1799 where he worked at the Salpêtrière Hospital and became a favorite student of… …   Wikipedia

  • Jean Étienne Dominique Esquirol — (Toulouse, 1772 París, 1840) fue un psiquiatra francés. Biografía Estatua de Esquirol en el Hospital Esquirol, Saint Maurice. Esquirol estudió en Toulouse y completó su educación en Montpellier. Marchó a …   Wikipedia Español

  • Jean-Etienne Esquirol — Jean Étienne Esquirol Jean Étienne Dominique Esquirol (Toulouse 4 janvier 1772[1] Paris 12 décembre 1840) est un psychiatre français, considéré comme le père de l hôpital psychiatrique français : il fit en effet voter la… …   Wikipédia en Français

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  • Esquirol — Esquirol, Jean Etienne Dominique, geb. 1772 zu Toulouse, der vorzüglichste unter den neueren Irrenärzten, seit 1823 Generalinspector der Universität von Paris u. Director der Privatirrenanstalt zu Charenton, verlor 1830 seine Staatsämter, st.… …   Herders Conversations-Lexikon

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