Georg Hermann von Meyer

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Georg Hermann von Meyer

Georg Hermann von Meyer (born August 16, 1815 in Frankfurt am Main ; † July 21, 1892 there ) was a German anatomist .

life and work

Meyer studied medicine from 1833 to 1839 in Heidelberg, Berlin and Frankfurt. In 1840 he completed his habilitation as a private lecturer in Tübingen. In 1844 he was appointed as Extraordinatius in Zurich. In 1856 he became full professor and director of the anatomical institute. In 1889 he retired and returned to Frankfurt, where he died in 1892.

However, he earned his greatest and lasting merit with his struggle for the shoe shape for the two-ball shoe, that is, for the distinction between right and left with writings since 1857. Literally: (somewhat shortened) "Should the sole of a shoe be good, so it must be designed in such a way that it enables at least the main movement of the ankles, including the joints of the big toe; the line from the middle of the heel to the metatarsophalangeal joint and the big toe must therefore be found in the same. We started from the principle that the shoe is there because of the foot, and that it should therefore provide protection against the weather and the ground without impairing its function. ” The Meyersche line could not hold because it has the meaning of the outer ray (ball of the little toe) neglected. The guideline of the modern shoe therefore goes from the middle of the heel through the base joint of the 2nd toe.

Meyer was the first to describe the final rotation in 1853 , an automatic twisting of the shin against the thigh, which occurs at the end of the extension of the knee and gives the knee stability.


In addition to about 160 publications in specialist journals, he has written a textbook on anatomy and four other major special works on anatomy. He also published numerous popular science presentations.

  • Text book of physiological human anatomy. Engelmann, Leipzig 1856
  • The statics and mechanics of the human skeleton. Engelmann, Leipzig 1873
  • Our language tools and their use to form speech sounds.
  • The human being as a living organism.


In 2015, the exhibition Form Follows Foot in the Senckenberg Museum , Frankfurt am Main was dedicated to Hermann Meyer. A catalog was published for the exhibition.


  • Julius Pagel: Biographical lexicon of outstanding doctors of the nineteenth century. Berlin, Vienna 1901 / Column 1126–1127 ( Online  - Internet Archive ).

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Wolfgang Marquardt: The theoretical basics of orthopedic shoemaking. Verlag Carl Maurer, Geislingen 1965, pp. 75–76.
  2. Michael Jagodzinski, Niklaus Friederich, Werner Müller: The knee: form, function and ligamentous reconstructive surgery. Springer 2016, ISBN 978-3-642-45001-3 , p. 38 ( online in the Google book search).
  3. Julius Pagel: Biographical Lexicon of Outstanding Physicians of the Nineteenth Century. Berlin, Vienna 1901 / Column 1126–1127 ( Online  - Internet Archive ).
  4. Two volumes:
  5. The statics and mechanics of the human skeleton. Link to the OPAC entry book with digitized version.
  6. From sandals to toe shoes in FAZ from April 25, 2015, page 39