Wasn't it Descartes who said the Pineal gland was the seat of the soul
The first description of the pineal gland and the first speculations about its functions are to be found in the voluminous writings of Galen (ca. 130-ca. 210 AD), the Greek medical doctor and philosopher who spent the greatest part of his life in Rome and whose system dominated medical thinking until the seventeenth century.
Galen discussed the pineal gland in the eighth book of his anatomical work On the usefulness of the parts of the body. He explained that it owes its name (Greek: kônarion, Latin: glandula pinealis) to its resemblance in shape and size to the nuts found in the cones of the stone pine (Greek: kônos, Latin: pinus pinea). He called it a gland because of its appearance and said that it has the same function as all other glands of the body, namely to serve as a support for blood vessels.
Second, he thought that these ventricles were filled with “psychic pneuma,” a fine, volatile, airy or vaporous substance which he described as “the first instrument of the soul.” (See Rocca 2003 for a detailed description of Galen's views about the anatomy and physiology of the brain.)
The pineal gland played an important role in Descartes' account because it was involved in sensation, imagination, memory and the causation of bodily movements. Unfortunately, however, some of Descartes' basic anatomical and physiological assumptions were totally mistaken, not only by our standards, but also in light of what was already known in his time. It is important to keep this in mind, for otherwise his account cannot be understood. First, Descartes thought that the pineal gland is suspended in the middle of the ventricles (Figure 6). But it is not, as Galen had already pointed out (see above)
this knowledge of the Pineal Gland was out long ago
and Rome would be the perfect place
they would like to be the gatekeepers
who has access to the soul Realmhttp://plato.stanford.edu/entries/pineal-gland/