Tag: iconography

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  • William Hogarth’s ‘Cunicularii’. Wellcome Library Item of the month, April 2010


    Cunicularii or the wise men of Godliman in consultation. Etching by William Hogarth, 1726. Wellcome Library no. 17342i The story of Mary Toft (also called Tofts) has been told many times, but it is worth revisiting as it has many… Continue reading

  • Richard Dadd in France – and in New York


    “Sketch of the murder of Henry the Sixth in the Tower by Richard Duke of Gloucester, afterwards King Richard the Third … by Richard Dadd, Bethlem Hospital, 1853.” Wellcome Library no. 570213i On 28 August 1843 the painter Richard Dadd,… Continue reading

  • Siamese twins, real and metaphorical


    The latest attempt to separate conjoined twins is going on in London. In this case the twins are Hassan and Hussein Benhaffaf from East Cork, and the operation is proceeding at Great Ormond Street Hospital. [1] From about 1830 conjoined… Continue reading

  • “The doctor’s dream”


    Engraving by Albrecht Dürer. Wellcome Library no. 570763i. Albrecht Dürer’s engraving traditionally called “The doctor’s dream” is thought to be an early work, dating from his late twenties, i.e. circa 1497-1498. It shows a man sleeping by a hot stove… Continue reading

  • What’s new in Paris–July 1539


    In an article in the March 2010 issue of Print quarterly, Kate Heard publishes a rare early reference to a French anatomical fugitive sheet. [1] Even more unexpected: it comes from an Englishman. More about that later. But first, what… Continue reading

  • Saints, iconoclasts and recipies: a 15th century manuscript


    It is rare to find a manuscript from the early 15th century that combines folk remedies with religious iconography and a royal heritage to boot – even more rare is to find one that has been heavily defaced. Such a… Continue reading

  • Behold the man: a painting in Perth


    Christ displaying his wounds. Oil painting on canvas 132.1 x 99 cm. Perth Museum and Art Gallery, Scotland.   This painting of Christ showing to the viewer the wound in his side has belonged to the town of Perth, Scotland,… Continue reading

  • Imperial China on Liverpool’s waterfront


    Dong Xun (1810-1892), Chinese Minister of Foreign Affairs in the late Qing, prolific writer, and authority on hydrography. Photograph by John Thomson, 1872, in a digital scan from 2009. Wellcome Library no. 19558i One of the treasures acquired by Henry… Continue reading

  • Maxim and Wellcome: Medicine and Machine Guns


    A scene from late-Victorian London society is captured here, in this illustration from the Wellcome Library: we’re at a Thanksgiving Day banquet in 1896. The great and the good of the American expatriate community are on show and presiding is… Continue reading

  • Schnaps: public messages about alcohol


    This graph (Wellcome Library no. 689465i) is one of the latest works to enter the Wellcome Library catalogue. Unexciting to look at, perhaps, despite its outlandish subject. It combines two graphs in one: the top half shows new admissions of… Continue reading