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The first use of self-hypnosis: Mesmer mesmerizes Mesmer.

Gravitz MA.

Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, George Washington University Medical Center, Washington, D.C. 20036-6511.

Self-hypnosis is an important modern therapeutic method. This article traces its initial use in either 1778 or 1779 by Franz Anton Mesmer, the founder of animal magnetism, which, in turn, led to the present modality of hypnosis. According to a contemporary account written by a colleague, Mesmer successfully treated himself for a condition described as a blockage in the lower part of his body. He may have also taught the method of self-magnetization to others in his clinic.

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