Medicine: Low Life

"We do not know what life is, but we do know that life is certainly a physical property, a behavior of a colloidal miscella [grain] of a particular constitution. In order to study this constitution, this behavior, we must necessarily turn to the smallest particle of autonomous living matter, where life presents itself in its most elementary form, where the complexity of the vital phenomena is least extensive. This infinitely small being which it is necessary to study is, therefore a protobe [protos=first, bios= life] and to be even more specific, it is that...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!