|Personal note: When working on the root term [-dactyl-] I came upon the biography of Juan Vucetich, the individual who created the modern method of dactyloscopy. Even though not a physician or anatomist, his life and accomplishments deserve to be presented here. Dr. Miranda.
Juan Vucetich (1858–1925) Juan Vucetich was born Ivan Vučetić in Croatia. In 1882, at 24 years of age he immigrated to Argentina, where he adopted the Spanish translation of his Croatian name. Because of his literacy (I have found no information on his actual studies), he started to work at the Argentinian Sanitary Works until he transferred to the Police Department Office of Identification and Statistics.
Vucetich was placed in charge of the anthropometric method used at the time to identify criminals based on bodily measurements. After reading an article in a French journal on Francis Galton's experiments with fingerprints as a means of identification, Vucetich began collecting fingerprints, taken from arrested men, while also making Bertillon-style anthropometric measurements. Galton's initial study proposed 40 parameters to classify fingerprints, but no system to collect or identify and individual using only this method.
|He soon devised a useable system to group and classify fingerprints, which he called "Ichnophalangometrics" (description of phalangeal measurements). Thankfully, that name was later changed to dactyloscopy
Vucetich demonstrated the utility of fingerprint evidence in an 1892 case, which resulted in the identification and conviction of a suspect for first-degree murder. Shortly after that, he dismissed entirely the Bertillon anthropometric system, arguing that a full ten-finger set of fingerprints was sufficient for identification, and that complicated anthropometric measurements were unnecessary.
In 1900, the Argentine Republic began issuing a kind of internal passport which included fingerprints—a practice that was eventually adopted by many other countries. The 1904 publication of "Dactiloscop?a Comparada", Vucetich's definitive work on fingerprint identification, and his travels to other countries, helped to spread his system throughout the world. Today, the Argentinian Police Academy is named after Juan Vucetich
Sources:1. "Juan Vucetich and the origins of forensic fingerprinting". Visible Proofs. National Library of Medicine
2. Vucetich, Juan. Dactiloscopia comparada: El nuevo sistema argentino. Tip. Jacobo Peuser, 1904