Arthur Keith - Father of Modern Nationalism, Life Achievements and Family

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Arthur Keith's Personal Details

Arthur Keith was a distinguished Scottish anatomist and anthropologist

InformationDetail
BirthdayFebruary 5, 1866
Died onJanuary 7, 1955
NationalityWelsh
FamousFather of Modern Nationalism, University College London, Intellectuals & Academics, Anthropologists, Physicians
Known asSir Arthur Keith
Universities
  • University College London
  • University of Aberdeen
  • University College London
Notable Alumnis
  • University College London
Birth PlaceAberdeen
GenderMale
Sun SignAquarius
Born inAberdeen
Famous asFather of Modern Nationalism
Died at Age88

// Famous Father of Modern Nationalism

Arthur Keith's photo

Who is Arthur Keith?

Arthur Keith was a distinguished Scottish anatomist and anthropologist who made remarkable contribution in the study of human evolution. Born into a modest family with an agricultural background, he was interested his studies right from the childhood and graduated with a degree in medicine. He was strongly influenced by the works of Charles Darwin and decided to shift his focus to anthropology. According to Arthur Keith, the evolution of the human race was as per the evolutionary harvest of nature. He also shared views with regard to the evolution of human society arising from competition based on patriotism, resentment, revenge, morality, leadership, nationalism and so on. He wrote more than 500 publications in the area of human anatomy and human evolution. In his studies he also described cultural differences as a barrier to interbreeding among groups and introduced concepts like ‘in- group’ and ‘out- group’. Arthur Keith was regarded by many, as the ‘Father of Modern Nationalism’. His findings and ideas were well received in the field of anthropology, and he was knighted for his contributions to science.

// Famous Physicians

Childhood & Early Life

Arthur Keith was born on 5 February 1866, to John Keith and Jessie MacPherson, in Aberdeen, Scotland. He was the sixth of their ten children.

As a child, Arthur Keith was influenced by the of naturalist Charles Darwin’s book ‘Origin of Species’ and he decided that he would pursue his career in the field of medical science.

In 1884, he enrolled in the Marischal College of the University of Aberdeen and graduated with a Bachelor degree in Medicine in 1888. While at the university he was guided by renowned botanist James Trail and anatomist John Struthers.

In 1892, he pursued studies in anatomy at the University of Aberdeen and the University College London. While at the University of Aberdeen, he earned his first award ‘Struthers Prize’ for his demonstration of ligaments in humans and other apes.

In 1894, he graduated with an MD degree from the University of Aberdeen for the thesis titled ‘The Myology of the Catarrhini: A Study in Evolution’. The same year he was made a fellow at the Royal College of Surgeons in England.

Career

Arthur Keith began his career in 1888 after his graduation. He was posted in Siam as a medical officer of a mining company. His initial intention to pursue this job was to collect and study various botanical specimens; however, his interests shifted towards human evolution and anthropology. He worked there for three years after which he went on to continue his studies.

Post his doctorate in medicine and earning a fellowship, in 1895, Arthur Keith was employed as the senior demonstrator of anatomy at the London Hospital, and in 1899, he was elected the Head of Department.

He published his work ‘An Introduction to the Study of Anthropoid Apes’, in 1897. Between 1897 and 1900, he spent time comparing and studying the anatomy of fossil primates and the living and compiled his research. Though it remains unpublished, these studies laid the foundation for his prominent books and contributions in research.

In 1906, Arthur Keith made a remarkable discovery with his student Martin Flack. They discovered the component in the heart that makes it beat, also called the natural pacemaker, the ‘sinoartrial node’.

In 1908, Arthur Keith was chosen to be given the conservatorship of the prestigious Royal College of Surgeons and very soon he was appointed president of the Royal Anthropological Institute of Great Britain. He held this position for two years between 1912 and 1914. In 1911 his book ‘Ancient Types of Man’ was published.

In 1913, he was made a fellow by the Royal Society and a few years later in 1917 he was elected the Fullerian Professor of Physiology at the Royal Institution that is based in London. He held this post until 1923. It is during his post here that he was knighted in the year 1921.

Arthur Keith was voted as the president of the British Association for the Advancement of Science, in 1927. In 1930, he was elected as the head of his alma mater, the University of Aberdeen and he held his position for three years.

In 1931, Arthur Keith aided in building a research institute at Kent, a place where Charles Darwin once lived. The following year he was appointed the master of the institute and he continued to work there for the rest of his life.

Major Works

Arthur Keith is well-known in the field of anthropology for his interest in the study of human fossils and evolution of human society. Some of his major works in the field of anthropology are ‘Evolution and Ethics’ (1945) and ‘A New Theory of Human Evolution’ (1947).

He is also known for discovering the ‘sinoartrial node’—the natural pacemaker of the heart that is responsible for the initiation of the heartbeat—with his student Martin Flack in 1906.

Awards & Achievements

He was honored with knighthood by King George, in 1921.

Personal Life & Legacy

Arthur Keith married Celia Gray in 1900.

He died on 7 January 1955 in Kent, England, at the age of 89.

// Famous Intellectuals & Academics

Arthur Keith awards

YearNameAward

Other

Struthers Prize

Arthur Keith biography timelines

  • // 5th Feb 1866
    Arthur Keith was born on 5 February 1866, to John Keith and Jessie MacPherson, in Aberdeen, Scotland. He was the sixth of their ten children.
  • // 1884 To 1888
    In 1884, he enrolled in the Marischal College of the University of Aberdeen and graduated with a Bachelor degree in Medicine in 1888. While at the university he was guided by renowned botanist James Trail and anatomist John Struthers.
  • // 1888
    Arthur Keith began his career in 1888 after his graduation. He was posted in Siam as a medical officer of a mining company. His initial intention to pursue this job was to collect and study various botanical specimens; however, his interests shifted towards human evolution and anthropology. He worked there for three years after which he went on to continue his studies.
  • // 1892
    In 1892, he pursued studies in anatomy at the University of Aberdeen and the University College London. While at the University of Aberdeen, he earned his first award ‘Struthers Prize’ for his demonstration of ligaments in humans and other apes.
  • // 1894
    In 1894, he graduated with an MD degree from the University of Aberdeen for the thesis titled ‘The Myology of the Catarrhini: A Study in Evolution’. The same year he was made a fellow at the Royal College of Surgeons in England.
  • // 1895 To 1899
    Post his doctorate in medicine and earning a fellowship, in 1895, Arthur Keith was employed as the senior demonstrator of anatomy at the London Hospital, and in 1899, he was elected the Head of Department.
  • // 1900
    Arthur Keith married Celia Gray in 1900.
  • // 1906
    In 1906, Arthur Keith made a remarkable discovery with his student Martin Flack. They discovered the component in the heart that makes it beat, also called the natural pacemaker, the ‘sinoartrial node’.
  • // 1906
    He is also known for discovering the ‘sinoartrial node’—the natural pacemaker of the heart that is responsible for the initiation of the heartbeat—with his student Martin Flack in 1906.
  • // 1921
    He was honored with knighthood by King George, in 1921.
  • // 1927 To 1930
    Arthur Keith was voted as the president of the British Association for the Advancement of Science, in 1927. In 1930, he was elected as the head of his alma mater, the University of Aberdeen and he held his position for three years.
  • // 1931
    In 1931, Arthur Keith aided in building a research institute at Kent, a place where Charles Darwin once lived. The following year he was appointed the master of the institute and he continued to work there for the rest of his life.
  • // 1945 To 1947
    Arthur Keith is well-known in the field of anthropology for his interest in the study of human fossils and evolution of human society. Some of his major works in the field of anthropology are ‘Evolution and Ethics’ (1945) and ‘A New Theory of Human Evolution’ (1947).
  • // 7th Jan 1955
    He died on 7 January 1955 in Kent, England, at the age of 89.

// Famous Alumni of University College London

Arthur Keith's FAQ

  • What is Arthur Keith birthday?

    Arthur Keith was born at 1866-02-05

  • When was Arthur Keith died?

    Arthur Keith was died at 1955-01-07

  • Where was Arthur Keith died?

    Arthur Keith was died in Downe, Kent

  • Which age was Arthur Keith died?

    Arthur Keith was died at age 88

  • Where is Arthur Keith's birth place?

    Arthur Keith was born in Aberdeen

  • What is Arthur Keith nationalities?

    Arthur Keith's nationalities is Welsh

  • What was Arthur Keith universities?

    Arthur Keith studied at University College London, University of Aberdeen, University College London

  • What was Arthur Keith notable alumnis?

    Arthur Keith's notable alumnis is University College London

  • What is Arthur Keith's sun sign?

    Arthur Keith is Aquarius

  • How famous is Arthur Keith?

    Arthur Keith is famouse as Father of Modern Nationalism