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Chief Gall, a Hunkpapa chief, played a leading part in the Lakotas' long war against the United States. As a leader of the Hunkpapa Teton Sioux (Lakota), he was one of the commanders of the Indian cavalry forces at the Battle of the Little Big Horn. Chief Gall was one of the most aggressive leaders of the Sioux nation during their last stand for freedom.


Gall made his appearance into the Creator’s world some time around 1840 on the plains of South Dakota. He was born a citizen among many citizens of the Hunkpapa. His first name was Matohinshda, or Bear-Shedding-His-Hair.


The boy acquired his unusual name, Gall, (Pizia) when, as a hungry orphan, he ate the gall bladder of an animal killed by a fellow citizen. His guardian, Tatanka Yotanka, better known as Chief Sitting Bull , reared Gall as his own

.Early career

Gall acquired a reputation as an accomplished warrior and hunter during his late teens and became a chief in his twenties. He fought at the Battle of Big Mound with Inkpaduta, and as a warrior in Red Cloud's campaigns of 1866 through 1868, he rose to a high status among the Lakota.

Later career

Gall refused to accept the Fort Laramie Treaty of 1868 that ended the preceding hostilities. When the treaty of 1868 was disregarded, he agreed with Sitting Bull to defend the last of their once-vast domain. He constantly defended his people's right to their buffalo hunting grounds and believed that the government should be held to the letter of its agreements with them. Refusing to give up, Gall joined Sitting Bull and others who refused to remain as “prisoners” within the territory set aside for them by the whites. Gall eventually became Sitting Bull's military chief, and led attacks on army troops along the Yellowstone River in 1872 and 1873.

Gall enjoyed Sitting Bull’s total confidence as the latter planned and directed attacks against U.S. soldiers. He was a born military strategist, able to make note of, and grasp, an exploitation of his enemy. For Chief Gall, the trail to the Battle of the Big Horn began with Major Marcus Reno and his unprovoked attack on Gall’s village along the Little Big Horn River. During Reno’s attack, his troopers killed several members of Gall’s family. Gall, using superior skill combined with inspiring ferocity, led his band in a counterattack, which led them to the great defeat of George A. Custer and his 7th Calvary command.

At the Battle of the Little Big Horn in 1876, Gall led his Hunkpapa warriors, who first checked Major Reno's advance across the river by chasing them into the woods. He then swept his warriors north to join Crazy Horse of the Oglala Sioux. Then his forces carried out a frontal attack on Custer's column, defeating the hapless unit. Following the battle, Chief Gall entered Canada along with his chief, Sitting Bull

.Latter days

At some point, Gall and Sitting Bull had a disagreement that caused Gall to bring his band back across the border late in 1880. Gall appeared at Fort Peck at Poplar Creek, Montana on January 3, 1881. He surrendered to the military, bringing half of the Hunkpapa band with him. Although promised amnesty by the United States if they returned, when Gall crossed into the U.S., some of his people came under attack, and in the spring they were all rounded up and held as military prisoners at Fort Randall. From there they were transported to the Standing Rock Agency (reservation) in Dakota Territory. Gall settled on Standing Rock, where he became friends with the man who would prove to be Sitting Bull's bitterest enemy, Indian Agent James McLaughlin.

After Gall was subdued, he turned away from the freedom road and concentrated his attention on making his and his people's lives the best they could be, despite their internment on government reservations. Gall encouraged his people to accept the white man’s program for the Indian. Gall became a champion of federal efforts to "civilize" the Lakota. He lent his prestige to the reservation-farming program and became an active supporter of plans to educate Indian children in special schools.

As a farmer on the Standing Rock reservation, Gall became friendly with local settlers in his later years, eventually turning against Sitting Bull, possibly for the latter's affiliation with the Ghost Dance movement. Gall ignored the Ghost Dance religion when it appeared on the scene and instead became an envoy to Washington, D.C.

Gall became a reservation judge in 1889, and that same year gave his consent to the reduction in the reservation's size, despite Sitting Bull's opposition. Gall challenged Sitting Bull's leadership among the Lakota of Standing Rock, but he never matched his former mentor's influence and authority.

Gall was sought out by Buffalo Bill Cody to be a part of his Wild West Show. However, unlike Sitting Bull, Gall refused, saying, "I am not an animal to be exhibited before crowds." His spirit was tired, his eyes, dimmed. From then on Gall withered. A few years later, the old chief died on December 5, 1894, at his home on Oak Creek in South Dakota.

Iron gall ink - History

The earliest use of iron gall ink is hard to establish. The reaction between tannin and iron salt to create a colored product was already known in Antiquity. Gaius Plinius Secundus (23 -79 A.D.) describes an experiment in which he dripped a solution of iron salt on papyrus that had been soaked in a tannin solution. The pale brown papyrus immediately turned black upon contact with the iron salt. It was not until centuries later that this reaction was deliberately used to produce ink.

Carbon ink preceded the use of iron gall ink as the primary writing ink. Various sources refer to the first use of carbon ink in circa 2500 B.C. Carbon inks were made by burning material such as oil, resin or tar. Burning these materials produced soot containing pure carbon and oxidized materials. When properly manufactured, the soot could contain up to 80% carbon particles. This was mixed with water and gum to keep the carbon in suspension. A good quality carbon ink had a blue-black appearance. Such an ink would not discolor with age but could easily smudge with high humidity and was easy to remove from a document. Aged carbon ink and iron gall ink are sometimes hard to distinguish from one another.

Visual examination alone does not provide enough information to identify the ink. Although most iron gall inks turn brown over time, color alone does not indicate an aged iron gall ink. Poor quality carbon inks contain a high proportion of tarry material which also produces a brown color. If the tar content is high and storage conditions poor, the ink might become quite pale. In contrast, some iron gall ink on parchment can, even after centuries, appear deep black and might easily be mistaken for a carbon ink. To distinguish iron gall ink from carbon ink or other inks such as bistre or sepia, a quantitative test for the presence of iron in an ink line is a useful method for determining its identity. However, different inks can still show traces of iron content depending on its method of manufacture and storage.

A very early recipe for iron gall ink can be found in the Encyclopedia of Seven Free Arts by Martianus Capella, who lived in Carthage in the fifth century. In it, Capella describes "Gallarum gummeosque commixtio" as a writing ink. Although the exact date of the transition from carbon ink to iron gall ink is not known, it can safely be stated that by the end of the late Middle Ages iron gall ink was the primary ink. There are examples of manuscripts in which both inks were used. However, iron gall ink had some distinct advantages which led to the eventual displacement carbon ink. Iron gall ink was easier to manufacture, generally did not clog the writing tool, and was hard to remove from the surface on which it was applied - a valued characteristic for official record keeping.

This transition was accelerated by an increasing demand for writing ink, even though writing was a skill of a privileged few. Old household manuals indicate that ink-making was often one of the domestic duties of women.

Recipes were also passed from one generation to the next. In contrast to this individualized approach is the strict formulation of ink used in the administration of the seventeenth century trade company "de Verenigde Oost Indische Compagnie" (The Dutch United East Indies Company). Iron gall ink was used well into the twentieth century, when synthetic dyes were developed. It is interesting to note that an official specification for ink used in official documents of the German government was in use until 1974.

History and Etymology for gall

Middle English galle, going back to Old English gealla, galla, going back to Germanic *gallōn-, galla- (whence Old High German & Old Saxon galla, Old Norse gall), going back to Indo-European *ǵholh3-n- (whence, without the suffix, Greek cholḗ "bile, bitter hatred," chólos "bitter hatred, wrath," Avestan zāra- "bile"), a derivative of *ǵhelh3- "green, yellow" — more at yellow entry 1

Note: The sense "boldness," first attested in the U.S. in the second half of the 19th century, is perhaps of independent origin.

Middle English gallen, in part derivative of galle gall entry 4, in part borrowed from Middle French galer "to scratch, rub, mount an attack on," derivative of gale "gallnut, callus," borrowed from Latin galla gall entry 3

Middle English galle, borrowed from Anglo-French, borrowed from Latin galla "gallnut, oak apple," of obscure origin

Note: Latin galla cannot be akin to gall entry 4 if the latter does in fact descend from Indo-European *ǵholH-, and in any case the basic meaning of galla appears to be "excrescence" rather than "sore, blight."

Middle English galle "sore on the skin, stain, evil, barren or wet spot in a field (in names)," probably in part going back to Anglian Old English *galla (West Saxon gealla) "sore on the skin of a horse," in part borrowed from Middle Low German galle "swelling in a joint, blastodisc, barren place," both nouns going back to Germanic *gallan- (whence also Old Norse galli "fault, flaw"), perhaps going back to an Indo-European base *ǵholH-, whence, from the derivative *ǵholH-r-, Norwegian galder "windgall," Old Irish galar "disease, pain," Welsh galar "mourning, grief"

Note: Perhaps additionally connected are Lithuanian žalà "harm, damage" (from *ǵholH-eh2), Hittite kallar "nefarious thing, demon" (from *ǵholH-ro-), Old Church Slavic zŭlŭ "bad, evil" (from zero-grade *ǵhlH-o-). According to an older hypothesis the Germanic words are a borrowing from Latin galla "gallnut, oak apple" (see gall entry 3), but given the wide distribution and range of meanings of the Germanic words, this appears unlikely.

Gall - History

The history of St. Gall Catholic Church, School, and Parish has deep roots!

This history below was compiled from the current church building Dedication book, the celebratory book of the Servants of the Holy Heart of Mary and 90th birthday of St. Gall, and the St. Gall 100th anniversary celebration book. Many thanks to Mrs. Janet Bohne and Mrs. Lil Hoffman for their help with this history.

Beginning in the early 1840s, the area now known as Gage Park was originally settled by German farmers. While the decades and centuries have seen a change in demographics, Gage Park has always remained overwhelmingly Catholic. In 1865, the small cluster of farms and towns was incorporated into the town of Lake, and was officially annexed into Chicago in 1889. By then, farms were being replaced by some 30 wooden cottages, though there were no paved roads or public transportation system.

In the early 1880s, the village of Elsdon, just to the west of Gage Park, was centered around the Grand Trunk Station at Fifty-First Street. The people depended on the Tiffany Car Shop for their work, and the small Catholic community living in the area became a mission and branch of St. Agnes Parish in the spring of 1890.

Reverend J.A. Hemlock gave Masses in a small cottage located at 5151 S. St. Louis Ave. In the fall of 1893, Rev. Hemlock retired due to poor health and St. Agnes Parish welcomed Rev. A.J. Hitchcock. The "little mission" was well-served by this priest.

Shortly after Rev. Hitchcock assumed the position at the mission, the church was moved to a larger space at 5201 S. St. Louis Ave. The Masses were held in a large hall upstairs while a grocery store occupied the first floor. Due to poor attendance at Mass, the Catholic congregation disbanded. Early in 1894, Father J.E. Le Sage from St. Joseph's and St. Anne's (both in Brighton Park) took control of the little mission. The church then moved to a frame house at the north-east corner of 52nd St. & Turner, now known as Christiana.

Over the next five years, the community grew and the village of Elsdon became incorporated into the City of Chicago, just as Gage Park had been, and it became necessary to establish a permanent church and parish, rather than keeping the "little mission". In May, 1899, Father Michael J. Sullivan was appointed the first pastor of the brand new parish. Father Sullivan served 132 parishioners, the first members of St. Gall. One parishioner, John A. Walther, suggested that the new church be named after the patron saint of his home canton in Switzerland. This suggestion was accepted by Chicago Archbishop Feehan, and thus St. Gall became the newest parish on Chicago's southwest side.

A large building boom was taking place as electric trolley service was extended first to Western Avenue, then to Kedzie. Beginning in 1905, Western & Garfield Boulevards were planned and laid out, contributing greatly to the development of industry and residences in the neighborhood. Shortly after this, the neighborhood was named for the Gage family, who owned much of the property in the area. Between 1910 and 1930, Gage Park was privileged to become home to a portion of the "bungalow belt". These distinct homes & apartment buildings have housed generations of St. Gall graduates, and continue to be a source of pride in both Gage Park & the city of Chicago. Thanks to the building boom, St. Gall saw a tremendous growth in both adults and children, which contributed greatly to the building of our school.

In 1908, after nearly 10 years in service to the people at St. Gall, Father Sullivan was transferred to Resurrection parish. In his absence, the Augustinian Fathers took charge of the parish as a mission of St. Rita parish. At this point in time a much larger church building was needed, and the church moved again, this time to a fourth building at 54th & Millard. This building sat more than 500 parishioners each Sunday. Mass was celebrated in the new building for the first time on May 1st, 1910.

It was at this time that the parishioners felt the need for a school. In September 1910, the first classes were held at St. Gall School, located above the church at 54th & Millard. The first Sisters to serve the people and children of St. Gall were the Dominican Sisters from Adrian, Michigan. The first school was divided into two classes: first class and second class. The first class was comprised of first, second, third, and fourth grade, taught in one classroom by one sister, and the fifth, sixth, seventh, and eighth grades were taught in another classroom by another sister.

For the first seven years of the school's existence, the school educators were Sister Adalbert, Sister Helen Marie, Sister Ann Genevieve, Sister Mary Theresa, Sister Mary Louis, and Sister Mary Wenceslaus. These nuns shared the convent with the Sisters at St. Rita parish and traveled each day via switch engine, driven by Mr. Art Foster, a St. Gall parishioner.

On October 29th, 1916, Father Fred P. Cannell was appointed pastor at St. Gall and the church building at 54th & Millard was abandoned for a better site at 55th and Kedzie. The school continued to meet upstairs in the building at 54th & Millard.

By 1920, there were over 13,000 residents of Gage Park, mostly from Bohemian and Polish origins. Many of these residents found employment in the Chicago Union Stockyards. By 1925, the community was able to support 3 movie houses, including the Colony, which was built at 5824 S. Kedzie, and where it still stands today, though it is no longer used as a movie house.

In 1922, Ben F. Bohac founded Talman Home Federal Savings and Loan, which originally stood on the corner of 51st & Talman, and was later moved to the corner of 55th and Kedzie, just across the street from St. Gall. The bank and St. Gall Parish enjoyed a working partnership for many years, which continues to this day (though Talman has since merged with LaSalle/Bank of America).

In 1923, plans were drawn up for a new school building and the school was completed in 1924. The new school stood on the corner of 55th and Sawyer. The Dominican Sisters then remained at St. Rita and the Servants of the Holy Heart of Mary moved in to take charge of the school and serve the people of St. Gall. On September 22nd, 1923, the new school building opened under the care of Mother St. Agnes, Sister Mary Catherine, Sister Philomena, and Sister Mary of the Rosary. Approximately 100 children were registered on that first day.

The Sisters moved into the Rectory, and Father Cannell moved in with a parishioner until a Convent could be built. While plans for a new church were created, the basement of the school was used for weekly Mass. A small convent was built at 5553 S. Sawyer and served the Sisters for only a few years. In 1926, the present Rectory was built to provide a new home for the priests. In June 1928, plans were drawn up for a new church in the school basement as the congregation swelled to more than 900 at Mass each week. On February 3rd, 1929, the new basement church was opened.

In early 1924, Father Cannell resigned due to failing health. His replacement was Monsignor Hishen, who would serve St. Gall for more than 30 years. It was under Msgr. Hishen that St. Gall parish saw the greatest growth, both in parish numbers and spiritual development.

The school was also marked by great growth and it was necessary to build an addition to the school. A second building of eight rooms was added in 1935. Five of these rooms were reserved and converted into living quarters for the twelve sisters who taught in the school buildings. Also at that time many social clubs were created by the parish members. Bowling leagues for men and women, a dramatic society, and a club for adolescent parishioners were all founded. The annual card party and dance was first held at this time. The annual party was the social and financial backbone of the parish for many years.

As school enrollment increased, the Sisters found it necessary to convert the five classrooms in the new building back into classrooms and move into more private quarters. This would give the sisters more privacy as well as free up five classrooms in the school. In 1949, the present day convent was built.

In 1949, the first St. Gall School Band was organized under Mr. Otto Nagl. For many years, the St. Gall Band was one of the most rivaled school bands on Chicago's south side, at one time boasting over 100 members and marching in all our local parades, including the 63rd Street Christmas Parade. Mr. Nagl served St. Gall School as band director for nearly 40 years, and his legacy lives on in our music program.

In the early 1950s, Monsignor Hishen noted that the basement church was once again unable to hold the crowds that attended Masses each Sunday. Masses were being held in what is now the school gym and Bingo Hall. Plans for an "upper church" or street level facility, were considered, especially because the basement church would flood during rainy weather.

The first plans for the new church called for a superstructure over the old church so the new church could be built over an existing foundation. A fund raising committee was formed and was served by more than 20 men, including Mr. George Hoffman, whose wife Lil taught 3rd grade at St. Gall for more than 30 years.

On October 16th, 1955, Monsignor Hishen broke the ground for the new church building. The first Mass celebrated in the present church on the corner of 55th and Kedzie was Easter Vigil, 1957.

The seating capacity of the original church design was to be 1400. It was at the time of the new church construction that the present "middle addition" was added to the school. This middle addition joined the two school buildings standing a block apart on Sawyer and Kedzie. It included adding 4 new classrooms and a school library.

Monsignor Hishen desired that the altar be the focus of the new church. He stated, "The altar should be the true center of the church." Keeping these thoughts in mind, the original church drawings were scrapped and the architects created a new plan: a quarter circle, which shortened the distance between the furthest pew and the altar, as well as increased seating capacity, and keeps the altar as the focus of the church. The new design also made the best use of the space existing on 55th and Kedzie. The brand new church was formally dedicated on April 13th, 1958.

As Monsignor Hishen entered retirement, he remained active in parish life. The convent basement was remodelled and named the Hishen Senior Center in 1972. That room had served as the parish Kindergarten for many years and was also home to our Extended Day program. It is currently the home base for the parish youth group that meets weekly. Monsignor Hishen passed away on May 25th, 1973 at age 79. His dedication to the people of St. Gall will always be remembered. The Hishen Center remains a vital piece of St. Gall parish. In addition to the youth group, it is now a gathering place for RICA, Religious Education, and English as a Second Language classes.

In September 1989, the Servants of the Holy Heart of Mary celebrated their 100th anniversary at St. Gall, and St. Gall celebrated 90 years on the southwest side. They also celebrated their long cooperation together. That mass was celebrated with the people by Joseph Cardinal Bernadin, one of Chicago's most beloved religious figures.

Father David P. Dowdle was installed at St. Gall's seventh pastor on October 16th, 1992. It was under Father Dowdle's guidance the Hispanic Ministry began in order to reach out to the growing Hispanic population of Gage Park. The first Spanish-language Mass was celebrated on December 12th, 1996. More than 2,500 people attended the Mass. It was at this time that two Spanish language Masses were added to the weekend rotation to serve the growing Hispanic population.

On November 19th, 2000, St. Gall parish celebrated its 100th anniversary. It is a rare milestone and St. Gall parish has been blessed as it continues to thrive and serve the needs of the Gage Park community. Weekly Mass attendance continues to grow and thrive, and we welcome new additions to our parish and school families. We are blessed to have such dedicated new parishioners, as well as faithful and loving parishioners who have served St. Gall for decades. It is because of their support that we continue to be successful

School enrollment has ebbed and flowed over the years due to increased population and the closing of other local schools. When the first permanent school building opened, St. Gall welcomed 100 children into the fold. At the time the new church was dedicated, school enrollment was over 1,000. When the parish celebrated it's 75th anniversary in 1974, enrollment was 618 students. In the year 2010, our enrollment was 231.

Beginning in 2001, work was done on the school to improve the building and thus enhance the education the students received. The old windows were replaced with windows that are heat efficient and soundproof. Our proximity to Midway Airport is an asset, but our soundproof windows allow education to continue without the interruption of sound pollution from the airport.

With the addition of the windows, brand new air conditioning and heating systems were installed in each classroom. Ceiling fans were also added to keep the rooms from becoming too hot. The new windows are also equipped with emergency exits. Finally, brand new counter tops and cabinets were added to each classroom. The Computer Lab was also updated in 2016 to provide our students with the best possible opportunities. Our lab currently houses 35 computer stations, an interactive white board, a photo/document scanner, printers, and wireless servers for the entire school.

In the 1990s a classroom was converted into a functioning Science Lab. Students receive practical experience performing experiments in biology, the life sciences, and chemistry.

As the demand grew, a Preschool program was added in the mid-1990s and Kindergarten became a full-day program. Each program introduces children to a Catholic education from a young age, and both programs allow students to become members of the St. Gall family from the very beginning.

Father Rene Mena was installed as the 10th pastor of St. Gall on July 1, 2016. It is the hope that the ministry begun by the previous pastors, sisters, ministers, and parishioners will continue well into the next 100 years.

As we look to the future, it is the hope and prayer of all who work and serve at St. Gall that the parish and school continue to thrive and do the work of God here on earth. While many generations have come and gone from St. Gall, we know that as the people of God gathered together, St. Gall is our home.

1899-1908: Father Michael Sullivan
1908-1916: Father William Egan
1916-1934: Father Fred Cannell
1934-1967: Monsignor James Hishen
1967-1977: Father Henry Troy
1977-1992: Father Michael Adams
1992-1999: Father David Dowdle
1999-2009: Father John Dearhammer
2009-2016: Father Gary Graf

2016-present: Father Rene Mena

St. Gall School Principals:

1924-1926: Mother St. Agnes Dionne
1926-1933: Mother Marie of the Presentation
1933-1939: Mother St. Dominic
1939-1945: Mother St. John the Baptist
1945-1951: Mother Anita Marie
1951-1957: Sister Mary Alice
1957-1960: Sister St. Agnes
1960-1966: Sister Louise Marie
1966-1972: Sister Ruth Traman
1972-1975: Mr. Walter Hansen
1975-1979: Miss Carol Gliwa
1979-1986: Sister Loretta Finn
1986-1989: Miss LaVerne Schauer
1989-1997: Mr. Gary Campione
1997-2006: Sister Erica Jordan
2006-2007: Mrs. Maria Hawk
2007-2011: Mrs. Marilyn Baran
2011- 2015: Ms. Janie Flores

Gall - History

Franz Joseph Gall was born in the Swabian village of Tiefenbronn near Pforzheim, which was later in the German Grand-Dutchy of Baden, the sixth of ten children of Roman Catholic merchant parents. Although originally intended for the priesthood, and first educated by his priest uncle, Gall studied medicine in the French city of Strasbourg in 1777. There Gall was introduced to the comparative anatomy of Johann Hermann (1738-1800) who taught that there was a close relationship between Man and apes. In 1781 Gall continued his medical studies in Vienna where he was most impressed by his teacher, the well-known physician Maximilian Stoll (1742-1787). Stoll emphasized the collection of many empirical facts from clinical observation before drawing general conclusions, a theme which would permanently become part of Gall's practice and rhetoric. Gall received the doctor of medicine in 1785 and became a successful, well-connected, private physician in Vienna. He married for the first time in 1790. Gall was very proud and independent he even rejected an offer in 1794 to become the personal physician to emperor Franz II - merely to preserve his independence. Gall's character was not the least important ingredient in forming his system. His three main passions were, as Ackerknecht writes: "science, gardening, and women."

By 1792-3 Gall was convinced that he had discovered localized regions of the cerebral cortex where innate universal faculties resided. Gall called these regions "organs", a term which was by then common in Vienna for localized brain modules. The particular faculties of Gall's psychology and organology reflect the cases in the asylum and in local prisons from which he made many of his first generalizations, viz. Mord/Würgsinn (faculty of murder) and Diebsinn (faculty of larceny) and from peculiarities in his own patients.

Gall began to collect human and animal skulls and wax moulds of brains from around 1792 in order to study the development of the cranial contours with the characteristic behaviours associated with a species of animal, or a well-known general or robber. His collection of skulls, as well as plaster casts of heads and skulls, became so extensive, and his energy in collecting them so conspicuous that he became a local celebrity. By 1802 the collection consisted of 300 human skulls and 120 plaster casts.

Gall called his new system "organology" and "Schädellehre" (doctrine of the skull) and later simply "the physiology of the brain". Gall is justifiably remembered as a highly innovative brain anatomist. Although he had no formal anatomical qualifications, Gall made the cerebral cortex (the thin outer grey layers of the cerebrum, in German it is called the brain's 'rind') the centre of attention in place of the ventricles. Since Galen (129-199) the ventricles had been treated as the most important parts of the brain and the cortex was considered only a protective layer.

Even in 1796, the same year that Gall began to lecture on his system, the highly respected German anatomist Samuel Thomas Soemmerring (1755-1830) published his Über das Organ der Seele (On the Organ of the Soul). In the second part Soemmerring tried to locate the sensorium commune (or "the soul") in the intraventricular cerebral spinal fluid. Like Descartes' theory that the soul acted through the pineal gland, Soemmerring's idea was never very well received. While his contemporary imagined a locus for the influence of a soul, Gall taught that psychological phenomena take place in specific regions in the cerebral cortex while soul and mind were otherwise ignored. Gall described the nervous system as composed of a multitude of independent nervous centres. His assignation of specific psychological functions to otherwise undifferentiated regions of cortex and the cerebellum is the modern starting point for cerebral localization. Although having been independently postulated many times in the past, localization has been continuously applied and modified ever since Gall, and he is now seen as the founder of cerebral localization.

Gall developed an innovative method for dissecting the brain which revealed the developmental relationships between its parts. Instead of slicing into the entire brain from above as other anatomists of the time, Gall dissected from below, following the medulla oblongata (the brain stem) upwards into the brain, tracing out the fanning fibres which reach into all corners of the brain. Gall claimed to have discovered that the nerves flowed not to a centre, but outwards in all directions, and hence there was no central control centre but instead diffuse and localized modules throughout the surface of the brain. Gall described the brain as the continuation of the spinal cord and claimed to have discovered that the brain is made of "bundles of threads" rather than a pudding-like substance. His claims to be able to be able to separate these fibres were highly controversial- partly for the reason that it appeared to refute any possibility for a single centre of control. Gall appears to have been the first anatomist to have paid close attention to the windings of the cerebrum (the gyri) which had hitherto been ignored and inaccurately represented as arbitrary.

With his ideas of localization, Gall was the first person to create a theory of localized mental illness. For Gall, mental illness was brain illness. Gall spoke for a more gentle handling of the insane wherever he went. In addition, Gall was the first to push the distinction between criminal responsibility and crime as the result of somatic defects. Gall reacted strongly against what he perceived as the French sensualist philosopher Claude-Adrien Helvétius' (1715-1771) extreme belief in learning to the exclusion of congenital abilities. Gall emphasized the opposite and was therefore often accused of fatalism and determinism. In one sense Gall's efforts were in effect a drive to displace an existing vocabulary for discussing psychological behaviour with his own.

Gall's system first appeared in print in December 1798 when one of his letters was published in the main literary journal of the Holy Roman Empire, Der neue Teutsche Merkur, edited by the poet Christoph Martin Wieland. Wieland included a note with the letter assuring his readers that all would find Gall's system of importance, as Dr. Gall was a special and uniquely qualified authority. Indeed, Gall was believed for many years to posses a unique authority partly from his emphasis on his many observations in the Viennese medical institutions and because of his rhetoric of relying on Nature to bring him to conclusions. During phrenology's later career, the claim that the system was founded on untold numbers of observations never faded, though time and place were forgotten.

An unexpected event changed Gall's system from a Viennese curiosity to an international subject. For six years Gall gave public lectures on his system in his home during which time three German pamphlets were published on the subject of Gall's system by 1801 and there was a single mentioning of him in a British periodical. Gall planned to publish a large multi-volume work on his system entitled Lehre über die Verrichtungen des Hirns, und über die Möglichkeit, die Anlagen mehrerer Geistes- und Gemuthseigenschaften aus dem Bau des Kopfes, und des Schedels des Menschen und der Thiere zu erkennen (Doctrine of the Functions of the Brain, and the possibility of recognizing the tendency of several properties of mind from the structure of the heads and skulls of humans and animals). Before his work could be published Gall's lectures were banned by the emperor Franz II in December 1801. The text of the decree provides several reasons for the ban: the enthusiasm with which Gall's system is discussed, that some might get carried away, the attendance of ladies, and that perhaps the system might lead to materialism and thereby go against the "the first principles of morality and religion". The ban also proscribed any publication of Gall's system.

On 6 March 1805, Gall, then forty-seven, the twenty-nine year old Spurzheim as Gall's famulus and dissectionist, Gall's servant, his wax modeller, two monkeys, and the greater portion of Gall's collection of skulls and casts left for Berlin on what Gall intended to be a journey of some months duration.

Sketch of Gall lecturing in Berlin in 1805.

(Do you recognize others in this sketch? Please contact me if you do.)

Gall and his craniological system soon became an international sensation. From Berlin Gall received invitations to lecture in further cities, universities and courts throughout Europe causing him to continually extend his tour. Gall and his motley company eventually travelled to more than fifty cities throughout Germany, Denmark, The Netherlands, Switzerland, and France- all the while steering clear of the battles of the Napoleonic wars. (see map of the tour) With very few exceptions, Gall was a great success everywhere he went. Lecturing to most of the crowned heads of Europe, in all the major universities in Germany as well as before science societies, as in Kiel, or in posh hotels, Gall covered a large expanse of social as well as geographic territory. Gall's success may not have been due solely to his own style and system, but to the allegiances and interests of his audiences.

The Edinburgh Medical and Surgical Journal, March, 1806 reported:

The craniology of Dr. Gall was the favourite topic of the German literati during the summer of 1805 at almost every university and capital of the Northern Provinces of Germany . . . In the beginning of last spring the doctor set out for Berlin, and lodged in the house of his intimate friend, Mr. Kotzebue. He there met with universal acceptance. The King, the Queen, princes and princesses, interested themselves so much in his discoveries that he obtained an invitation to go through a course of lectures in presence of the Royal Family, during which the Queen inspected the dissection of a human brain, while the doctor demonstrated the whole series of his astonishing discoveries. A rancorous attack was now commenced against his theory by Dr. WALTER, leading anatomist in Berlin, but it failed of the intended effect, every person being convinced that he was dictated by envy. On the opposite side, the justly renowned Dr. HUFELAND, first physician to the King, almost all the faculty, as well as others professed their full assent, and several interesting tracts were published, in which ample justice was done to the theory . Dr. Gall visited the houses of correction and prisons in Berlin and Spandau, and gave the most convincing proofs of his ability to discover, at first sight, such malefactors, thieves, and men of particular talents as were amongst the convicts and prisoners. At Torgau, where he also visited a house of correction, Professor BÖTIGER accompanied him, who afterwards published Gall's observations, an abstract of which is given in this article.

Johann Gottlieb Walter (1734-1818) in his etwas über Hn. Dr. Gall's Hirnschädel-Lehre Dem Berliner Publikum mitgetheilt. (Berlin, 1803, 1805) wrote of the fears that Gall's system was a dangerous form of determinism or fatalism:

With great ease Gall differentiated the more distinguished thieves from those less dangerous, and in every case gave a description which tallied with the record of the trial of the prisoner. ".'he disposition to thieving was most marked in the prisoner Columbus, and amongst the youths in the head of little with reference to whom Gall advised that he should be kept in prison for life, as he will never be anything else than a "good-for-nothing." In both cases the acts of the trial showed an abnormally active disposition to thieving. What man of feeling, for morality and religion will be able to read this without amazement? A fanatic advised the perpetual internment of a child, which has stolen once and is supposed to have an imaginary organ of thieving. Mankind must revolt when it hears that a preacher of fatalistic theories promulgates teaching which would be abhorred even by the most savage people without morals and religion. And shall nations accept them who believe in Christ and revere His preaching of charity? And we fill the pockets of such a man and engrave medals in his honour: It is lucky for Berlin that Dr. Gall held his Fatalism Sermon in the presence of intelligent and just judges in any other place it might have had dangerous consequences.

After meeting some of the most prestigious learned men of Europe, Gall arrived in Paris in October 1807 where he received the most enthusiastic and perhaps also the most profitable reception so far. The presence of the quasi materialist ideologues in Paris made Gall feel quite at home. Although originally intending to continue his tour, Gall made Paris and its environs his home until his death in 1828. See my bibliography of Gall's works.

Treatment for gallstones

Specific treatment for gallstones will be determined by your health care provider based on:

Your age, overall health, and medical history

Your tolerance of specific medicines, procedures, or therapies

Expectations for the course of the condition

Your opinion or preference

If the gallstones cause no symptoms, treatment is usually not necessary. However, if pain persists, treatment may include:

Gallbladder removal (cholecystectomy). Once removed, the bile flows directly from the liver to the small intestine. Side effects of this may include diarrhea because the bile is no longer stored in the gallbladder.

Oral dissolution therapy. Drugs made from bile acid are used to dissolve the stones.

Methyl-tert-butyl ether. A solution injected into the gallbladder to dissolve stones.

Extracorporeal shockwave lithotripsy (ESWL). A procedure that uses shock waves to break stones up into tiny pieces that can pass through the bile ducts without causing blockages.

Contact dissolution therapy. An experimental procedure that involves injecting a drug directly into the gallbladder to dissolve the stones.


Saint Gall, an Irish monk, erected a hermitage which eventually became the monastery. After the death of Saint Gall in 646, Othmar was appointed by Charles Martel as the custodian of Gall’s relics. It was during the rule of Pepin the Short that Othmar founded the Abbey of St. Gall, where literature and science flourished. The abbey developed further, and many noblemen from Alemanni became monks. During the rule of Abbot Waldo of Reichenau, copying of manuscripts began which eventually paved the way for a library.

The Era of Prosperity (The Golden Age)

In the 9th century, the abbey ran into conflict with the Bishopric of Constance. It was in 813 when Emperor Louis the Pious confirmed imperial immediacy of the abbey that the dispute stopped. The abbey was transformed into an Imperial Abbey and King Louis the German confirmed its immunity in 833.

The abbey flourished from this time till the 10th century. Many famous scholars that include Notker of Liège, Notker Labeo, Notker the Stammerer and Hartker were associated with the abbey. The library got expanded during the 9th century. The abbey purchased manuscripts on various topics and copies were made. More than 400 manuscripts are preserved and can be found in the library today.

The Cultural Silver Age

Between 924 and 933 the abbey was threatened by the Magyars resulting in the removal of books to Reichenau. Among these, many were not returned to the library. In 937, the abbey was damaged by fire though the library survived.

Princely Abbey

The abbey turned into a Princely Abbey when Abbot Ulrich von Sax was crowned as a Prince of the Holy Roman Empire by King Philip of Swabia in 1207. The abbey started getting involved in local politics which resulted in its decline.

In 1524, the town of St. Gallen embraced the Reformation while the abbey remained Catholic, which resulted in disharmony between the town and the abbey.

The abbey was raided by the Calvinist groups in the 16th century, and many old books got scattered. Abbot Diethelm started the restoration which prevented the decline. The library was expanded too. A final attempt was made to expand the abbey which resulted in the demolition of most of the medieval monasteries. The new edifice including the cathedral was designed by architect Peter Thumb. The construction in late Baroque style took place between 1755 and 1768.

Abbey of Saint Gall Floor Plan Abbey of Saint Gall Abbey Library of Saint Gall
Abbey of Saint Gall Cathedral Interior Abbey of Saint Gall Church Abbey of Saint Gall Images
Abbey of Saint Gall in Front Abbey of Saint Gall Inside Abbey of Saint Gall Pictures
Inside of Abbey Princely Abbey Saint Gall Abbey District

What are the most common gallbladder problems?

Most people do not pay much attention to their gallbladder until it starts causing trouble. However, when there is a problem, it can be quite painful and require immediate action.

The gallbladder is a 4-inch-long, pear-shaped organ found under the liver in the upper right region of the abdomen. It stores bile, a compound produced by the liver to digest fat, and helps the body absorb fat-soluble vitamins and nutrients.

In a healthy gallbladder, this process happens painlessly. However, when blockage occurs in the gallbladder, or it stops functioning correctly, considerable pain and discomfort can occur.

In this article, we look at the function of the gallbladder, some common gallbladder problems and their symptoms, treatment options, and the long-term outlook.

Share on Pinterest The gallbladder is found just below the liver. Its job is to store bile used to digest fat.

Some common gallbladder problems include:

Gallstones, or cholelithiasis

Gallstones are solid masses of cholesterol or pigment that can be different sizes.

They occur when high levels of fat and bile cause crystals to form. These crystals may combine over time and expand into stones.

Stones can be as small as a grain of sand or as large as a golf ball and may or may not cause symptoms.

Common bile duct stones, or choledocholithiasis

Small tubes transport bile from the gallbladder and deposit it in the common bile duct. From there, it is moved to the small intestine. Sometimes, gallstones can lodge or form in the common bile duct.

Most often, these stones begin their life in the gallbladder and migrate to the common bile duct. This is a secondary stone or a secondary common bile duct stone.

If the stone forms within the duct itself, it is a primary stone, or primary common bile duct stone. These are less common but are more likely to cause an infection than secondary stones.

Gallbladder cancer

Gallbladder cancer is very rare, affecting less than 4,000 Americans per year but if it does occur, it can spread to other parts of the body.

Risk factors include gallstones, porcelain gallbladder (described below), female gender, obesity, and older age.

Inflamed gallbladder, cholecystitis

Acute or sudden cholecystitis occurs when bile can’t leave the gallbladder. This commonly happens when a gallstone obstructs the tube that bile uses to travel into and out of the gallbladder.

Chronic cholecystitis occurs if there are recurrent acute attacks.

When the bile duct is blocked, bile builds up. The excess bile irritates the gallbladder, leading to swelling and infection. Over time, the gallbladder is damaged, and it can no longer function fully.

Perforated gallbladder

If gallstones are left untreated, they can lead to a perforated gallbladder – in other words, a hole in the wall of the organ can develop. Perforation also occurs as a complication of acute cholecystitis.

This breach in the gallbladder’s wall can allow leakage of infection into other parts of the body causing a severe, widespread infection.

Common bile duct infection

If the common bile duct becomes blocked, it can lead to an infection. This can be treated if it is caught early however, if it is missed, it can spread and develop into a severe, life-threatening infection.

Dysfunctional gallbladder or chronic gallbladder disease

Repeated episodes of gallstone attacks or cholecystitis may damage the gallbladder permanently. This can lead to a rigid, scarred gallbladder.

In this case, symptoms can be hard to pinpoint. They include abdominal fullness, indigestion, and increased gas and diarrhea.

Gallstone ileus

Gallstone ileus is rare but can be fatal. It occurs when a gallstone migrates to the intestine and blocks it. Often, emergency surgery is needed to clear the blockage.

Gallbladder abscess

Sometimes, a patient with gallstones will also develop pus in the gallbladder this is called empyema. The condition can produce severe pain in the abdomen. It can be life-threatening if it is not treated.

Individuals with diabetes, reduced immune system, and obesity have an increased risk of developing this complication.

Porcelain (calcified) gallbladder

Porcelain gallbladder is a condition where, over time, the muscular walls of the gallbladder develop a buildup of calcium. This makes them stiff, limiting the gallbladder’s function and increasing the risk of gallbladder cancer.

The word “porcelain” is used because the organ becomes bluish and brittle.

Gallbladder polyps

Polyps are a type of growth that is typically benign (noncancerous). Smaller gallbladder polyps often do not cause any problems and rarely produce any symptoms. Larger polyps may need to be removed.

Symptoms of gallbladder problems include:

  • Pain in the mid- or upper-right section of the abdomen: Most of the time, gallbladder pain comes and goes. However, pain from gallbladder problems ranges from mild and irregular to very severe, frequent pain. Gallbladder pain often causes pain in the chest and back.
  • Nausea or vomiting: Any gallbladder problem may cause nausea or vomiting. Long-term gallbladder diseases and disorders may lead to long-standing digestive problems that cause frequent nausea.
  • Fever or shaking chill: This signals an infection in the body. Alongside other gallbladder symptoms, fever and chills may point to a gallbladder problem or infection.
  • Changes in bowel movements: Gallbladder problems often cause changes in bowel habits. Frequent, unexplained diarrhea can signal a chronic gallbladder disease. Light-colored or chalky stools may point to a problem with the bile ducts.
  • Changes in urine: Patients suffering from gallbladder issues may notice darker than normal urine. Dark urine may indicate a bile duct block.
  • Jaundice Yellowing of the skin occurs when liver bile does not successfully reach the intestines. This normally happens due to a problem with the liver or due to a blockage in the bile ducts caused by gallstones.

When to see a doctor

Anyone with gallbladder symptoms should seek medical attention. Mild, intermittent pain that goes away on its own does not need immediate attention. However, patients with this type of pain should make an appointment with their doctor to be examined further.

If the symptoms are more severe and include the following, a patient should be seen immediately:

  • upper-right quadrant pain that does not go away within 5 hours
  • fever, nausea, or vomiting
  • changes in bowel movement and urination

This combination of symptoms can indicate a serious infection or inflammation that needs immediate treatment.

France Gall

Although best known as the perky teenager who won the 1965 Eurovision Song Contest with the Serge Gainsbourg-penned "Poupée de Cire, Poupée de Son," that entry only marked the beginning of a long and fruitful career for French pop singer France Gall. One of the original yé-yé girls, she stood alongside other singers including Sylvie Vartan, Françoise Hardy, and Chantal Goya, in bringing the nascent pop style to the charts it was called "yé-yé" as a nod to British Invasion bands and their "yeah-yeah" refrains. Gall also scored another, far more controversial hit with Gainsbourg's "Les Sucettes, which translates to "Lollipops." It was packed with obvious double-entendres that the singer claimed not to know existed. The blatant sexuality, coupled with the naive innocence of the teenage singer, marked her career in the annals of pop history. She had a lengthy and more varied career, releasing consistently solid records for another three decades, including 1973's self-titled offering, Débranche! in 1984, 1992's Double Jeu (with husband Michel Berger shortly before his death that year), and finally, France, in 1996 (its songs were all composed by Berger). Although she was known as a cult figure in the rest of the world, in her native country, Gall remained a major star and beloved cultural figure until her death in 2018 at age 70.

Born Isabelle Geneviève Marie Anne Gall in Paris on October 9, 1947, she was the daughter of French performer and producer Roger Gall, who had written songs for Édith Piaf and Charles Aznavour and singer Cécile Berthier. At age 15 in 1962, Gall was encouraged by her father to record some songs and send the professionally cut demos to music publisher Denis Bourgeois, who signed her to the Philips label immediately. The four-track EP Ne Sois Pas Si Bete (the standard in French pop music release format at the time) was an enormous hit, selling over 200,000 copies in France thanks both to the irresistible title track and the absolutely stunning cover photo. Gall released a series of similarly successful pop hits for the next several years, peaking with winning the Eurovision Song Contest in 1965. Though many dismissed Gall as merely a Francophone Lesley Gore making fluffy and ultra-commercial pop songs with little substance, her hits from the era have endured the test of time. Her only real peer was Françoise Hardy, who was also making consistently fine records during this era. Although Gall's high, breathy voice was admittedly somewhat limited, she made the most of it. Even deliberately trite hits such as "Sacre Charlemagne," a duet with a pair of puppets from a popular children's show on French TV, have an infectious charm. More substantive tunes, such as the sultry jazz-tinged ballad "Pense a Moi" and the brilliant rocker "Laisse Tomber les Filles," are easily as good as any pop single produced in the U.S. or Great Britain at the time.

In 1966, Gall's public persona shifted into a more mature phase, both musically and personally. The change came with that year's controversial hit "Les Sucettes." Though on the surface the Serge Gainsbourg-penned tune was a pretty little song about a young girl and her lollipop, the unmistakable subtext of the sly lyrics meant that the not-yet-18-year-old Gall was singing approvingly (and, she later claimed, completely unknowingly) about oral sex (that said, she refused to lick a lollipop for an appearance on national French television. Les Sucettes and its follow-up, Baby Pop, are among Gall's finest recorded moments they are more musically sophisticated and varied than her early hits, yet remain just as catchy. The psychedelic era found Gall, under Gainsbourg's tutelage, singing increasingly strange songs, like "Teenie Weenie Boppie" (a bizarre tune about a deadly LSD trip that somehow involves Mick Jagger) set to some of Gainsbourg's most out-there arrangements. The excellent 1968 is Gall's best album from the period, with "Teenie Weenie Boppie," the trippy "Nefertiti," and the slinky, jazzy "Bebe Requin."

Like other stars of the '60s yé-yé scene, Gall's career took a downturn in the early '70s. No longer a teenager, but without a new persona to redefine herself (and without the help of Gainsbourg, whose time was taken by his own albums and those of his wife Jane Birkin's), Gall floundered both commercially and artistically. At the end of 1968 (the year of the historic strike and other major cultural upheavals in France), at the age 21, Gall separated from Denis Bourgeois upon the expiration of her contract with Philips. She moved to a new record label, La Compagnie, in 1969, with which her father had signed a contract. She issued two covers: one Italian ("L'Orage/La Pioggia"), the other British ("The Storm"). Marginally successful, she also released "Les Années Folles," penned by Barbara Ruskin. Further singles including "Des Gens Bien Elevés," "La Manille et la Tévolution," "Zozoï," and "Éléphants" were largely ignored by radio and the record-buying public. La Compagnie went bankrupt within three years of its creation.

Gall regularly recorded in Germany between 1966 and 1972, in particular with composer and orchestrator Werner Müller. She had a successful run in West Germany with songs penned by Horst Buchholz and Giorgio Moroder, including "Love, l'Amour und Liebe" (1967), "Hippie, Hippie" (1968), "Ich Liebe Dich, so Wie Du Bist" ("I Love You the Way You Are"), and "Mein Herz Kann Man Nicht Kaufen" ("My Heart Is Not for Sale") (1970). She had other hits in Germany as well that were far more mainstream but less popular on the charts.

The early '70s were rough for Gall's career. Although she was the first artist to be recorded in France for Atlantic Records in 1971, her subsequent singles, "C'est Cela L'Amour" (1971) and "Chasse Neige" (1971), failed to chart. In 1972, Gall recorded her final songs by Gainsbourg with "Frankenstein" and "Les Petits Ballons," but these too failed commercially. The results of her collaboration with Jean-Michel Rivat as artistic director, "La Quatrieme Chose" (1972), "Par Plaisir," and "Plus Haut Que Moi" (1973) also failed to meet marketplace expectations.

In 1973, Gall heard singer/songwriter Michel Berger's single "Attends-Moi." She became obsessed with the track and with the consistent quality of Berger's work. After meeting him through a radio broadcast she asked if he would consider collaborating with her and offer his opinion on some songs her producer wanted her to record. Berger was visibly disconcerted by their lack of quality, but assented to the collaboration without reservation, given the professional acumen displayed in her singing.

Six months later, in 1974, after recording vocals for Berger's song "Mon Fils Rira du Rock 'n' Roll," Gall's publisher formally asked him to write for her. (She'd already made her mind up that he was the only songwriter she would work with.) In 1974, "La Déclaration D'Amour" was the first in a long line of hits that marked a turning point in Gall's career, cementing the partnership between herself and Berger. The two fell in love and married in June of 1976. Afterwards, Gall sang Berger's songs exclusively until his death. Berger took over managing his wife's entire career with 1975's France Gall, the album that re-established her popularity across Europe. Berger's middle-of-the-road soft rock writing style was quite slick and commercial Gall added her authority to his songs and as a result, she became a more technically adept singer. In 1978, Berger encouraged her to take on musical theater. She trod the boards at the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées (where she had auditioned some 15 years earlier) and starred in the show Made in France. Its most novel aspect was that, save for the Brazilian drag act Les Étoiles, the entire orchestra, choir, and dance troupe were comprised exclusively of female members. In 1979, Gall starred in the cast of the rock opera Starmania its music was composed by Berger and the story was penned by Québécois author Luc Plamondon. The show played for a month at Palais des Congrès de Paris (an atypical positive response for Paris). In 1982, Gall rehearsed there to present Tout Pour la Musique, an innovative show marked by its use of electronic music.

During the remainder of the '80s, the authority and quality of her singing continued to surprise and impress both critics and fans. Three of her albums -- Débranche! (1984), Babacar (1987), and the live Tour de France (1988) -- were major chart successes, and they remain enduring testaments to her mature artistry.

The '90s were a horrible decade for Gall personally. In 1992, Berger died suddenly of a heart attack at age 46. A year later, Gall was diagnosed with and treated for breast cancer. She announced her retirement after Berger's death to look after the pair's two children, then reconsidered and resumed her career with 1996's France, a tender tribute to her partner and mentor. A new generation began discovering her work when Heavenly covered her Serge Gainsbourg-penned hit "Nous Ne Sommes Pas des Anges" on Operation Heavenly. The following year, however, tragedy returned: Gall's and Berger's daughter Pauline died of cystic fibrosis at the age of 19. She recorded the single "Resiste" in 1997 but seldom appeared in public after Pauline's death. She did, however, remain active in charity work.

In 2001, the career documentary France Gall par France Gall was broadcast on French national television and watched by millions. In 2007, Gall staged and appeared in the France 2 documentary Tous Pour la Musique, to mark the 15th anniversary of Berger's death. 2004 saw the release of two Berger-penned singles," La Seule Chose Qui Compte" and "Une Femme Tu Sais," marking her final studio recordings.

Gall died at the American Hospital of Paris in Neuilly-sur-Seine on January 7 of 2018 due to an infection contracted during treatment for an undisclosed form of cancer. Two years later, Jack White's Third Man Records reissued her three most popular albums of the '60s: Poupée de Cire, Poupée de Son, Baby Pop, and 1968. To promote them, the label hosted dance parties in Detroit, Nashville, Los Angeles, New York, and Montreal.

Gall - History

(1) Heb. mererah, meaning "bitterness" ( Job 16:13 ) i.e., the bile secreted in the liver. This word is also used of the poison of asps ( 20:14 ), and of the vitals, the seat of life (25).

These dictionary topics are from
M.G. Easton M.A., D.D., Illustrated Bible Dictionary, Third Edition,
published by Thomas Nelson, 1897. Public Domain, copy freely. [N] indicates this entry was also found in Nave's Topical Bible
[S] indicates this entry was also found in Smith's Bible Dictionary
Bibliography Information

Easton, Matthew George. "Entry for Gall". "Easton's Bible Dictionary". .

  1. Mereerah , denoting "that which is bitter" hence the term is applied to the "bile" or "gall" (the fluid secreted by the liver), from its intense bitterness, ( Job 16:13 20:25 ) it is also used of the "poison" of serpents, ( Job 20:14 ) which the ancients erroneously believed was their gall.
  2. Rosh , generally translated "gall" in the English Bible, is in ( Hosea 10:4 ) rendered "hemlock:" in ( 32:33 ) and Job 20:16 rosh denotes the "poison" or "venom" of serpents. From ( 29:18 ) and Lame 3:19 compared with Hose 10:4 it is evident that the Hebrew term denotes some bitter and perhaps poisonous plant. Other writers have supposed, and with some reason, from ( 32:32 ) that some berry-bearing plant must be intended. Gesenius understands poppies in which case the gall mingled with the wine offered to our Lord at his crucifixion, and refused by him, would be an anaesthetic, and tend to diminish the sense of suffering. Dr. Richardson, "Ten Lectures on Alcohol," p. 23, thinks these drinks were given to the crucified to diminish the suffering through their intoxicating effects.

Smith, William, Dr. "Entry for 'Gall'". "Smith's Bible Dictionary". . 1901.

(1) ro'sh, or rosh (Deuteronomy 32:32 only, "grapes of gall"):

Some very bitter plant, the bitterness as in (2) being associated with the idea of poison. Deuteronomy 29:18 margin "rosh, a poisonpus herb" Lamentations 3:5,19 Jeremiah 8:14 9:15 23:15, "water of gall," margin "poison" Hosea 10:4, translated "hemlock" Amos 6:12, "Ye have turned justice into gall" Job 20:16, the "poison of asps":

here rosh clearly refers to a different substance from the other references, the points in common being bitterness and poisonous properties. Hemlock (Conium maculatum), colocynth (Citrullus colocynthus) and the poppy (Papaver somniferum) have all been suggested as the original rosh, the last having most support, but in most references the word may represent any bitter poisonous substance. Rosh is associated with la`anah, "wormwood" (Deuteronomy 29:18 Lamentations 3:19 Amos 6:12).

(2) mererah (Job 16:13), and merorah (Job 20:14,25), both derived from a root meaning "to be bitter," are applied to the human gall or "bile," but like (1), merorah is once applied to the venom of serpents (Job 20:14). The poison of these animals was supposed to reside in their bile.

(3) chole (Matthew 27:34), "They gave him wine to drink mingled with gall" this is clearly a reference to the Septuagint version of Psalms 69:21:

"They gave me also gall (chole, Hebrew rosh) for my food and in my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink." In Mark 15:23, it says, "wine mingled with myrrh." It is well known that the Romans gave wine with frankincense to criminals before their execution to alleviate their sufferings here the chole or bitter substance used was myrrh (Pliny Ep. xx.18 Sen. Ep. 83).

Watch the video: Χολή (July 2022).


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  3. Fielding

    wonderfully, very valuable answer

  4. Pityocamptes

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