|Born||Franz Anton Mesmer|
23 May 1734
Iznang, Bishopric of Constance (today Moos, Baden-Württemberg, Germany)
|Died||5 March 1815 (aged 80)|
|Known for||Animal magnetism|
Franz Anton Mesmer (23 May 1734 – 5 March 1815) was a German physician with an interest in astronomy.
He had a theory that there was a natural transfer of energy between all animated and inanimate objects. He called this animal magnetism, sometimes later referred to as mesmerism. The theory attracted a wide following between about 1780 and 1850, and continued to have some influence until the end of the century. In 1843 the Scottish physician James Braid proposed the term hypnosis for 'animal magnetism'. Today this is the usual term for mesmerism.