Of all the main areas of comparative neurology the study of the evolution of cerebellum is the most satisfying. The spinal and cranial nerves and nuclei are established early and remain almost monotonously unchanged, while the forebrain, after assuming protean forms in submammals, rockets to great complexity early in mammalian evolution. However, the neural pattern of the cerebellar cortex is virtually identical in all its parts in all vertebrates. Its connections are quite conservative, but its size and configuration are closely correlated with the motor organization and degree of activity of its bearer.
This book, as its title indicates, is the first part of the comparative anatomical story, the cerebella of mammals being reserved for a later volume.
Olof Larsell was a professor of anatomy at the University of Oregon for 31 years. From 1918 to 1964, when death overtook him, his research interests were devoted, with complete singlemindedness, to