This introductory chapter begins with a discussion of early studies in neuroanatomy. It then considers the contributions of improved single cell visualization methods and presents a listing of some of the major discoveries concerning interneuronal microcircuits within the hippocampus and neocortex. The idealized form of an interneuronal type is discussed. Finally, the chapter briefly addresses how earlier neuroscientific thinkers, and particularly Cajal, dealt with the conjoint problems of the idealization of cell types and the existence of cell-to-cell variability.
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