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  • There may be troubles ahead…

    09/10/2012

    MS.8826 A recent manuscript acquisition highlights the importance of dance to health provision for women in the 1930s. Not as health-promoting exercise along the lines of the Women’s League of Health and Beauty, but as a means of supporting voluntary… Continue reading

  • Item of the Month, December 2011: Sun Yat-sen and Sir James Cantlie

    29/12/2011

    In March 1912 the provisional president of the newly created Republic of China, Sun Yat-sen, sent this letter to Mrs Mabel Cantlie, wife of the British tropical medicine specialist Dr James Cantlie. In it he surveys the enormous challenge the… Continue reading

  • HMS Beagle’s Naturalist

    27/12/2011

    On the 27th December 1831, one of the most famous expeditions of the nineteenth century was launched, as it was on this day, 180 years ago, that the second voyage of HMS Beagle begun. As such, let’s mark this anniversary… Continue reading

  • Years in the archives

    21/12/2011

    When the Library surveys readers to assess their level of satisfaction with our service, a common comment is to highlight the helpfulness of the staff (a comment for which we are extremely grateful). We’d like to think that this begins… Continue reading

  • The Giant Ape in the Library

    26/11/2011

    Quick – what’s the connection between a hundred-foot rampaging gorilla and the Wellcome Library? Well, it wouldn’t be a common sight in the reading room, and although stepping out onto the Euston Road has its hazards they usually relate to… Continue reading

  • Item of the Month, June 2011 – “An important alchemical manuscript…”

    28/06/2011

    This year’s Manchester International Festival sees the premier of a new opera, based on the life of the Elizabethan mathematician, astrologer and alchemist, John Dee. We’ve already tweeted about the Opera and flagged up some Dee-related items from our collections.… Continue reading

  • English manual of practical chiromancy or palmistry

    19/05/2011

    Ever wished you had the ability to accurately judge a person’s character from their appearance? Perhaps you want to know when your baby will be born? Or what message your new beard is giving to strangers? Well, you’re in luck.… Continue reading

  • On this day 1807

    25/03/2011

    On 25th March 1807, the Slave Trade Act 1807 was passed by Parliament. This was the first definite victory for the campaign initiated twenty years earlier to abolish the trade. Although slavery itself had been outlawed in England since 1772,… Continue reading

  • Arguing on the telephone

    07/03/2011

    On this day in 1876, one hundred and thirty five years ago, Alexander Graham Bell patented the telephone that he had spent the previous two years developing. Obviously since that day the telephone has been used as widely by medical… Continue reading

  • A remarkable man

    21/12/2010

    We recently received, from his granddaughter’s executor, a couple of manuscripts of Colonel Frederick Smith (1858-1933) of the Royal Army Medical Corps. When cataloguing these, and turning to the usual sources of reference for information on his career, I discovered… Continue reading