Book One -- The things that sustain and support the entire body, and what braces and attaches them all. [the bones and the ligaments that interconnect them] | Chapter 6 On the Eight Bones of the Head and the Sutures Connecting Them

The use of sutures.

The skull did not need sutures so much for the transpiration of wastes, but it was fitting that it be made of many bones so that if it should be struck and break, its fractures should not proceed through the whole skull as through a clay pot, but be checked and cease in those places where the bone itself ends at the sutures. In addition, it was proper that the ventricles of the brain and several other bodies therein be swollen and elevated, so as not to collapse; this also is very well accomplished by the sutures. We shall demonstrate in the seventh Book that the fibers (G, H, I, and F in fig. 1, Bk. 7) of the hard membrane [dura mater cranialis] sheathing the brain, going through the sutures together with the ends of certain vessels, 48 spread out into the membrane [periosteum] covering the outside of the skull, and thus sustain the brain so that it does not collapse upon itself. It is particularly this usefulness, causing the parts in the brain requiring support to be correctly held up, that makes the distribution of skull sutures seem most just. For something that is oblong and rotund like the brain is no more fittingly raised than by transverse supports and by others that run lengthwise. 49



Book One -- The things that sustain and support the entire body, and what braces and attaches them all. [the bones and the ligaments that interconnect them] | Chapter 6 On the Eight Bones of the Head and the Sutures Connecting Them