Giovanni Mingazzini

Giovanni Mingazzini (1859 - 1929)

Giovanni Mingazzini (1859 – 1929) was an Italian neurologist.

Mingazinni was known for his extensive contributions to neuroanatomy, particularly with the study of the lenticular nucleus, cerebellum and corpus collosum, as well as the study of aphasia. He was known as “il fondatore della Neurologica Italiana” (the founder of Italian Neurology) and a hard-working researcher and teacher

Interesting facts: Mingazinni viewed and analysed the brain of the Russian Communist Leader Lenin following the death of the Soviet leader in 1924.

  • Born on February 15, 1859 in Ancona, Italy
  • 1883 – Graduated medicine, University of Rome
  • Studied at the Istituto di Fisiologica, Rome with Jacob Moleschott (1822-1893)
  • 1895 – Professor of psychiatry and neurology, University of Rome
  • 1907 – One of the founders of the Italian Society of Neurology (Società Italiana di Neurologia). Vice-president (1907); President (1911)
  • Died on December 3, 1929 in Rome, Italy from a heart attack

Medical Eponyms
Mingazzini sign (1913)

A test for subtle hemiparesis, where the participant holds their arms out in front of them with fingers spread. The examiner then observes for lowering of the upper limb.

The subject is asked to extend his arms forward as if he had to swear the oath, his hands placed at the same level as the forearm, his fingers spread apart. To divert the attention of the subject, it is good to have him keep his eyes closed. Then, after a time that can vary from half a minute to a minute, we see that the affected member of paresis has a tendency to lower before the other or to swing from side to side. The fingers of the paretic hand are animated by sharper tremors or slight movements slowly and before that on the other side, or be animated by oscillatory jerks, horizontally or vertically: sometimes, there is joint partial flexion of the leg

Revue Neurologique. 1913
Mingazzini sign 1913
Mingazzini sign 1913
Mingazzini manoeuvre (1913)

This manoeuvre is sought with the subject in a dorsal position; the thigh is bent at a right angle to the trunk – so it is substantially vertical – while the leg should be held horizontal. On the side of paralysis or pyramidal paresis, the leg lowers and the thigh deflects. Described by Jean-Alexandre Barré in 1937

Mingazzini field

Term first described by the Swedish internist and pathologist Salomon Eberhard Henschen (1847-1930) in 1925 referring to the area in front of the left lentiform nucleus, where fibers from Broca’s area and the corresponding area in the contralateral hemisphere join.

Oft ist jede Besserung der Sprache unmӧglich. Dies ist besonders der Fall nach Zerstӧrung des Mingazzinischen Feldes, das ventral von der zweiten linken Frontalwindung im Mark liegt, wo, nach Angabe von Mingazzini, die Fasern von der rechten F2, durch den Balken zur linken Fübertreten.

Often any improvement of the language is impossible. This is particularly the case after the destruction of the Mingazzini field, which lies ventrally from the second left frontal gyrus in the medulla, where, according to Mingazzini, the fibres pass from the right F2 [medium frontal gyrus], through the corpus collosum, to the left F2.
Mingazzini’s lenticular hemiplegia

Acute syndrome of the putamen, describing a lesion to the lenticular nucleus which Mingazzini had described in 1901

Major Publications


eponymictionary CTA


the person behind the name

Physician in training. German translator and lover of medical history.

BA MA (Oxon) MBChB (Edin) FACEM FFSEM. Emergency physician, Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital.  Passion for rugby; medical history; medical education; and asynchronous learning #FOAMed evangelist. Co-founder and CTO of Life in the Fast lane | Eponyms | Books | Twitter |

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