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Skeletons in the cupboard of medical science | University of Cambridge

theladygoogle:

In museums and galleries throughout the capitals of Europe, young men who embarked on the Grand Tour gazed at artistic representations of the human body in paintings, waxworks, and sculptures. Popular were the ‘Skeletons of Malefactors’ on display at the University of Leiden. Wax figures known as Venuses, found in Felice Fontana’s Florentine workshop, are mentioned in many letters and journals recounting travellers’ formative experiences. Grand tourists may well have also visited brothels where, well away from the confines of home, they would have gained (or expanded on) their early sexual experiences.

Research suggests that many young travellers also went to see smaller and less celebrated museums that displayed representations of human anatomy in the shape of skeletons (obtained by rendering down corpses), pickled body parts, and wax models of the body created to show with detailed accuracy the internal organs.

“My research explores the material side of human anatomy and the variety of spaces where new techniques and forms were developed.  The ways in which self-proclaimed experts were beginning to develop ingenious ideas for teaching and experimentation are an important part of this story,” said Carlyle. “They can be described as tinkerers or technicians who toiled away in workshops, but they also undertook forms of public outreach that contributed to their growing social authority.”

Particularly intriguing is the story of one Mademoiselle Biheron, a middle class Parisian who became famous for her anatomical wax models. Born in 1719, Biheron was a self-trained anatomist and entrepreneur whose museum, or ‘cabinet of curiosities’, in her house near the Sorbonne was an established, if slightly off-beat, stopping point for visitors to the capital. In a craft dominated by men, Mlle Biheron was highly unusual in being a woman. [read more]

(via anthrocentric)

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One more

One more night
One more kiss
Another day that has passed
With only a few more regrets
Things I should say
Plenty of things I shouldn’t

One more week
One more glance
Wanting to fast forward time to the
Next time I see you
And your smile

One more year
One more touch
The butterflies still flutter
My heart still jumps
To know as much and
Nothing at all

One more…just one more…

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