The Basle Nomina Anatomica (BNA) was published in Latin after its unanimous approval on this date at the IX Congress of the Anatomische Gesellschaft in Basel, Switzerland.
In the late nineteenth century some 50,000 terms for various human body parts had been in use. The same structures were described by different names, depending (among other things) on the anatomist’s school and national tradition. Vernacular translations of Latin and Greek, as well as various eponymous terms, were barriers to effective international communication. There was disagreement and confusion among anatomists regarding anatomical terminology. Work on a new international system of anatomical terminology had begun in 1887 and culminated with publication of the BNA. It reduced the number of anatomical terms from 50,000 down to 5,528.