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History of Medicine: Some of Our Books

The study of the development of medical science and the role that medicine has played in society.

Succenturiatus Anatomicus - Paaw

Pieter Paaw was a leading anatomy instructor at Leiden and a great admirer of Vesalius. Paaw established the first anatomy theater in the Netherlands and helped to make the country a center for advanced training in medicine.

This book consists of Paaw's commentaries on the works of Hippocrates and Celsus on the wounds of the head. Written in Greek and Latin, the book has many fine illustrations of the anatomy of the head and the tools required for cranial surgery.

CID P336s 1616

The Microscope : and its revelations - Carpenter

  CID C297 1856       Available online.

  William Benjamin Carpenter studied medicine at University College London and Edinburgh, receiving his MD in 1839. He began to write books on the anatomy of the nervous system soon afterwards, which were very well received. Carpenter was elected to be a member of the Royal Society in 1844 and began teaching as a professor of physiology at the Royal Institution a year later. Eventually he would go on to the University of London, where he worked for 23 years as the rector.

  Over the course of his career, Carpenter would write important books on the notions of the unconscious mind and of alcoholism as a disease. His greatest impact on popular views of science, however, came with this book on the use of the microscope to see a hidden world of biological organisms and geological formations.

Notes on Hospitals - Nightingale

x610.9 N688 1863

Available online.

By the 1840's Florence Nightingale had begun to visit the poor and ill. While on a trip to Egypt in 1850, she witnessed the professionalism of nuns as caregivers in a local hospital, much more effective than nurses in England. She then trained with the protestant deaconesses at Kaiserswerth, which allowed her take on the position of superintendent of the Hospital for Invalid Gentlewomen. Nightingale was one of the first to be sent to rectify the situation of the wounded during the Crimean War. As Superintendent of the Female Nurses in the Hospitals in the East, she cleaned up the large hospital at Scutari with the help of a small number of volunteers.

Back Britain in 1856, she helped to establish training funds and facilities for nurses. And her writing helped to keep her reputation alive for decades even though ill health prevented her from continuing in any furth administrative work. This book discusses the design, record-keeping, and maintenance of hospitals with a constant stress on the need for cleanliness.

Railway and Other Accidents - Hamilton

xxWL 100 H217r 1905

Allan McLane Hamilton, a grandson of Alexander Hamilton, was a famous alienist in New York City. Hamilton's reputation working with nervous disorders led to his frequent involvement as an expert witness in court cases.

This book was intended as a guide for anyone dealing with medical issues in court cases.. The main audience, however, is really the lawyers seeking to defend transit and other companies from liability lawsuits. It includes an extensive discussion of nerve damage and nervous disorders brought on by traumatic accidents, as well as signs that symptoms are being faked.

Available online.

A Manual of Artistic Anatomy - Knox

BALL K74m 1852

Robert Knox worked as an anatomy instructor in Edinburgh. Knox set off such a passion for anatomy that it led to a shortage of subjects for his students, which brought controversy to his school when it turned out that two of his regular suppliers of cadavers, Burke and Hare, had murdered people to get the bodies. Knox ended up having to give up his school and move to London because of the scandal.

This book shows artists the anatomy of the human form, namely the skeleton and muscles, so that they can create more realistic images of people. There are only a small number of figures in the book, but the text describes the natural development and structure helping artists understand the underlying anatomy of the body.

The Mysteries of the Head and the Heart Explained - Grimes

"An improved system of phrenology, mesmerism, trance and the spirit delusion, ghost seeing and mind reading. Illustrated." J. Stanley Grimes (1807-1903), a native of Buffalo, was the president of the Western Phrenological Society. He wrote several books on phrenology for the popular audience. This one contains an interesting discussion of contemporary knowledge of the brain.

Experimenta Von Zwentzig Pestilentz Wurtzeln, unnd Kreutern - Schnellenberg

BALL R993k 1579

One type of new book that became popular in the 16th century, starting in Germany, was a guide to botanical medicine that included detailed woodprints of the plants during a period when the new printing technology made it possible for authors and publishers to experiment with new styles These books were a tremendous improvement over the earlier materia medica literature that relied heavily on the authors of the ancient world.

This work by Tarquinius Schnellenberg is on medicines effective against the bubonic plague and included several woodcut prints from an earlier book.

You can see a 1568 edition at Munich.

The Formation of vegetable mould through the actions of worms with observations on their habits - Darwin

  xxQH 365 D228f 1895

 Charles Darwin was interested in the topic of earthworms throughout his career as a naturalist.
 This book  first appeared in 1881, shortly before his death, and it was an instant hit that sold out quickly.

 The illustration is of the alimentary canal of an earthworm.

Vom Holz Gauiaco - Paracelsus

PARACELSUS Sudhoff 1 facs 1926

Housed at the Bernard Becker Medical Library, the St. Louis Medical Society's collection of Paracelsus material includes dozens of 16th-century works. The earliest of his writings that we have, however, is this exact facsimile of his work against the use of guaiac resin as a treatment for syphilis, written in 1529. The treatment was popular at the time largely because the tree and the disease both came from South America, but Paracelsus saw no evidence that it worked.

The Bavarian State Library has put their copy online.

Illustrations of the Gross Morbid Anatomy of the Brain in the Insane - Blackburn

xxWL 348 B628i 1908

Isaac Wright Blackburn worked as the pathologist at St. Elizabeth's. He wrote several books on the mentally ill. This one contains seventy-five images of diseased brains which are accompanied by short descriptions of the patients.

The person with the brain pictured here suffered from acute mania, as well as tuberculosis. Blackburn describes the brain as having a deep purplish hue.

Available online from

A Manual of the Climate and Diseases of Tropical Countries - Chisholm

BALL C542m 1822

A physician with many years of experience in the West Indies, Chisholm wrote this book to take some of the danger, and fear, out of service in the tropics for young doctors. He begins with a discussion of the climate and then writes of the straight-forward practices and treatments that can make it possible for the British to live in India and the West Indies.

The image shows a method for creating a vapor bath to treat rheumatism.

Nasology - Jabet

CID J11 1848

Written under the pseudonym, Eden Warwick, this work by George Jabet describes the different types of noses and what they can tell us about people's characters. Meant to be an elaborate joke to mock the popularity of phrenology at the time, the book provides an impressive number of illustrations of meaningful nose types.

Available online.

The Electric illumination of the bladder and urethra - Fenwick

xxWJ 500 F343e 1889

E. Hurry Fenwick, who worked in London, wrote this book to demonstrate the effectiveness of the Nitze Method of Electric Cystoscopy in showing the details of the bladder when used with the latest equipment that had been developed. Publication of the book proved to be a breakthrough moment in the development of urology as a surgical field, leading to further improvements in surgery and imaging.

Rukovodstvo dlia meditsinskikh sester stomatologicheskikh kabinetov - Gavrilov

English title: Manual for Medical Nurses in Dental Offices.

This books covers the basics that dental assistants needed to learn order to work alongside dentists who were filling cavities and performing oral surgery.

xxWU 90 G283r 1961

The Cephaloscope - Curtis

 CID C979o 1842

Available from GoogleBooks.

John Harrison Curtis (1778-1856) had a very mixed reputation as an otologist. He managed to be appointed the Royal Aurist by the queen and laid the groundwork for the first ear hospital. Still, many experts considered him a charlatan and a plagiarist. He confidently proclaimed that deafness could often be cured but his main therapy seems simply to have been irrigation.

This books discusses his invention, the Cephaloscope, that was just a larger version of the tube stethoscope. It was used to determine if there was circulation of air in the ear drum when the patient tried to force breath through one nostril. Little of the book covers the merits of his innovation; it is really just a standard discussion of familiar anatomy.

Traite des Sens - Le Cat

BECKER L456 1744

Claude Nicolas Le Cat studied medicine in Paris but was appointed to be the archbishop of Rouen before completing his degree. From a family of doctors, Le Cat became well-known throughout France as an excellent surgeon. He eventually became the major surgeon at the city hospital of Rouen, as well as anatomy lecturer, and royal professor. He also worked over twenty years as the secretary of the local royal academy of the arts and sciences.

Filled with numerous anatomical illustrations, this book looks at the philosophical questions concerning, the human senses.

Adversaria Anatomica - Tarin

CID T187 1750

Pierre Tarin was an anatomy instructor at Paris. He is best known for his articles in Diderot's Encyclopedia. The anatomical structures of the brain that are decribed and illustrated in this book were well-regarded by contemporary scholars. They are the most complete illustrations of the human nervous system of the time.

You can see the book online at the HathiTrust.

De Conceptu et Generatione Hominis - Rueff

CID R919 1580

Jakob Rueff wrote one of the earliest books concerning the science of conception and generation. Sprinkled with woodcuts from the famous artist Jost Amman (this was the first edition of the work to have them), the book presents various theories on mammalian embryology as well as advice on birthing techniques.

Rueff was in charge of regulating the midwives of Zurich. He intended his book mainly to offer advice to midwifes and women in labor, but also physicians and scholars, who were more likely to be able to read the Latin text.

The illustration here shows women attending a birth while men consult the stars to cast the baby's horoscope.

Grundriss der Kräuterkunde zu Vorlesungen Entworfen - Willdnow

x610.9 W697 1805

Karl Ludwig Willdenow helped to establish the study of the distribution of plant species, phytogeography. Wildenow had a special interest in the relationship between climate and the varieties of plant form around the world. He developed an extensive collection of plants and plant cuttings during his career and ended up working as the director of the Berlin Botanical Garden. In this book, he presents hundreds of essential points for the study of botany in a systematic testbook that is illustrated with dozens of small woodcuts.

Nosce te ipsum vel anatomicum vivum, oder Kurtz gefastes doch richtig gestelltes anatomisches Werck - von Hellwig

  CID H477 1720 OVERSIZE


   The city physician of Erfurt and the inventer of the toothbrush, Christoph von Hellwig, wrote dozens of books on astrology and popular medicine. This book, Nosce te ipsum vel anatomicum vivum, presents a standard discussion of anatomy at the time.


  The most interesting thing about this book is that it has several copperplates from Remmelin's work of a century before and even includes the fold-out images that allow the reader to see different levels of internal anatomy.

Plates of the Arteries - Goddard

BALL G578p 1839

Dr. Paul B. Goddard worked as a professor of anatomy at the University of Pennsylvania in the middle of the 19th century. Goddard's several books on anatomy cemented his reputation as a leading figure in the field, partially because he was a pioneer in using photography to create some of his anatomical images.

This book uses twelve hand-colored plates to present the position of large arteries. Goddard sought to provide a clear atlas for medical students.

Anatomische Tafeln - Casseri

x610.9 C344 1656

Casserius worked under Fabrici at Padua and succeeded him as the professor of anatomy. These images were originally intended for his  Theatrum anatomicum and became known as the Casserius Tables when Daniel Bucretius included them with the text, De Formatu Foetu, by Adriaan Van Den Spiegel.

The copperplate engravings of the Casserius Tables were immensely popular. They accompanied numerous medical texts by other writers for the next two centuries. The images of the uterus and foetus were especially influential, because not only did the engravings present clear pictures of good anatomical work, they were among the few images of foetal development produced during that period.

Kunstliche Zerlegung des Gantzen Menschlichen Leibes - Vesling

 x610.9 V578 1676

 Vesling was a professor at Leiden and a famous anatomist. This book describes the body as it was discovered through the process of dissection. It proved to be very popular, especially the version that was put together by Gerhard Blaes with his additional commentaries on what the dissector was seeing. The work by Blaes in Latin went through many editions and was translated into several different languages.

 Here we see the inner ear.

The Art of Distillation - French

 x610.0 F855 1653

John French was a physician in the parliamentary army. He taught himself the art of alchemy and translated several works on the topic into English. Respected for his knowledge of chemistry by figures such as Robert Boyle, French wrote this book to show how to construct and use equipment for distilling medical mixtures and experimental compounds. This is one of the early works on chemistry in English.


Medical Commentaries - Hunter

BALL H947m 1777

  In 1762, William Hunter produced the first edition of his medical commentaries. Hunter had a remarkable career as a physician and anatomist in London. His reputation was helped by the fact that he built a famous school of anatomy in Soho that educated many of the best medical men of his age. An avid collector of coins, books, and curiousities, Hunter built a house in Glasgow to house his growing collection which became the renowned Hunterian Museum.  This book, Medical Commentaries, contains some of Hunter's developed ideas on the anatomical structures of the body, but a great deal of the book goes over Hunter's argument that it was he who first described the function of lymphatic ducts and not the young Scottish, and also famous, anatomist, Alexander Munro, Jr.

Manual of Artificial Limbs - Marks

xxWE 172 M346m 1906

Marks describes the uses of artificial limbs, but much of the book covers the successful production of legs for individual amputees. He had worked as a civil engineer before moving to New York City to join his father's prosthetic limb company, A. A. Marks. George Marks went on to design many  innovative devices and published widely on the subject of prosthetic design, including advice to surgeons on how to amputate limbs in ways that would allow patients to effectively use prostheses.


The Human Hair - Beigel

xxWR 450 B422 1869

Hermann Beigel emigrated to London at a young age and worked for many years as a lecturer on Skin Diseases at Charing Cross Hospital. Following a series of articles that he wrote on diseases of the skin and hair for Virchow's Arhiv, Beigel wrote this work in English as a popular book on the aging and disorders of human hair. Beigel intended to explain the growth of hair to the general audience, but the book also contains some of his most important discoveries on the topic.

Beigel served on the battlefield in the Franco-Prussian War in 1871, when he was awarded the iron cross. Afterwards, he returned to Vienna to become the director of the Maria Theresa Hospital.

You can read an online version of this edition from Oxford University.

A Pocket Atlas of the Descriptive Anatomy of the Human Body - Masse

  Granville Sharp Pattison, the Scottish anatomist, produced this book late in his tempestuous career after he had finally settled into a job as anatomy professor at the University of New York. The book is a translation from French of the popular anatomy by Joseph Nicolas Massé of Paris. It contains many small illustrations in color to help the reader understand the anatomy of various systems with only limited descriptive text. Pattison's 1845 edition is still quite thick, but it is small enough to be carried around and consulted easily. In addition to the other printings that continued to sell well, Massé released his own small version as a pocket atlas five years later. 

xxQS 17 M415 1845

Manual of the Anatomy of Invertebrated Animals - Huxley

Thomas H. Huxley was largely self-educated, but he was able to serve as a surgeon on the HMS Rattlesnake and went on to become a professor of natural history at the Royal School of Mines. Huxley became England's greatest comparative anatomists, illustrating much of his work himself. His main claim to fame, however, was his work in reforming British education to promote science. In the course of a long career as a leading voice in the scientific community, Huxley also leant his support to many of Darwn's ideas on natural selection. This book completes a project Huxley had begun decades earlier to provide his biology students with a comprehensive textbook on the anatomy of invertebrates.

CID H986 1877 Available at GoogleBooks.  

An Illustrated Vocabulary - Asylum for Deaf and Dumb Children

Published by the the Committee of the Asylum for the Deaf and Dumb in London, this book was intended as a first word book. Many of the terms are illustrated with small engravings, especially nouns from the bible and natural history. Teachers were expected to use special techniques of pantomimic language along with the terms in the book to educate young students.

Our copy lacks a title page and some material from the front of the book, but the 4,000 images are in wonderful shape.

CID A861 1857

The Anatomy of Painting - Brisbane

x610.9 A337a 1769 EXTRA-OVERSIZE

John Brisbane was a physician to the Middlesex Hospital in 1758. Feeling dissatisfied with the way that anatomy was being taught, he put together this relatively small textbook for students of medicine and laypeople. Though he did not write his own work for the book, he did assemble small works on anatomy, especially those useful to artists, including Celsus and Albinus. The full page plates of the six tables of Albinus are especially delightful.

Transactions of the Antiseptic Club - Abrams

BALL A161t 1895

The University of Michigan has made their copy available through Google.

Albert Abrams worked as a physician and medical professor in San Fransico for years before making a fortune selling quack cures in the 1920s. Long before that, however, he produced this book in 1895. It contains  satirical illustrations and essays on the imagined antiseptic club, where pompous doctors insist on long sterilizing baths and dress in borated cotton.

Le médecin malgré lui - Molière

xxWZ 330 M721m 1901

Molière, is considered the master of French dramatic comedy. Certainly in the 17th century, he was one of the great playwrights of his day, though he had to tour as an actor for years before finding favor for his dramas at court. Several of his works mock the self-importance and ignorance of contemporary doctors; this particular play, first performed in 1666, The Doctor in Spite of Himself, features a drunken woodcutter who gets mistaken for a physician. 

Methodus curandae fistulae lacrymalis - Pallucci

BECKER P169 1762

Natalis Guisseppe Pallucci spent much of his career as the court surgeon in Vienna. 

In this book, he describes his surgery for closing up a hole that can form in the tear duct when it is wounded or has a burst abscess. Pallucci proposed using a fine tube inserted into the tear duct to pass a gold thread toward the nasal cavity through the nasal duct. A corrossive could be introduced to clean out any obstruction.

Experimental Investigation of the Spirit Manifestations - Hare

BALL H275e 1855

Robert Hare was a chemistry professor at the University of Pennsylvania. In 1854, he converted to Spiritualism and immediately wrote this book. The illustration shows a spiritoscope, which supposedly proves that the communication from spirits is not influenced by the medium.

Available online from the University of Michigan.

Practical Essay on the Club-Foot - Sheldrake

x610.9 S544 1798

Trussmaker to the East India Company and the Westminster Hosptial, Timothy Sheldrake wrote several books on the ways to treat scoliosis, hernia, and leg deformities with trusses, bandages, and supports. This book reveals his deep knowledge of the issues with muscles and bones that could cause difficulties with walking, but the successful cases he describes also serve as advertising for his expert services.

The Geological Evidences of the Antiquity of Man - Lyell

xxQH 366 L984g 1863

Charles Lyell's work on the mechanisms of geology led to a new understanding of the age of the earth. However, although Lyell became a friend of Charles Darwin's, he was slow to accept the antiquity of man or the theory of evolution.


This book announces Lyell's adoption of notion of human evolution over aeons and shares his own evidence in support the argument. It provided a strong backdrop for Darwin's Descent of Man that was published in the following decade.

The Use of the Röntgen Ray in the War with Spain - Borden

xxWN 445 U58b 1900

The US Surgeon General recognized the value of x-ray technology early on and ordered that the machines be set up in post hospitals. After seventeen machines were used in the 1898 conflict with Spain, the Surgeon General ordered this report on the usefulness of x-rays in wartime surgery.

A Treatise on the Principle Diseases of the Eyes - Scarpa

x610.9 S286 1818

Translated from Scarpa's fifth edition of Saggio di osservazioni e d'esperienze sulle principali malattie degli occhi (called Trattato di malattie degli occhi) of 1816, this book shows the surgery professor, and skilled draftsman, at his finest. It became a classic textbook of ophthalmology and was issued in numerous editions and translations over the next few decades.

How to Read Character - Wells

xxBF 870 W456h 1883

Phrenology was the pseudo-science of determining a person's character and ability by analyzing the shape of the head. It became quite popular at the end of the 19th century. This book, whose full title is How to Read Character: A New Illustrated Hand-Book of Phrenology and Physiology, for Students and Examiners; with a Descriptive Chart, sought to introduce readers to the important elements of character reading. The above pair supposedly illustrates the differences in the trait of "quality," though the author has difficulty describing how this notion of weight and density supposedly looks.

Abbildung des Menschlichen Auges - Soemmerring

BECKER S681 1801

Soemmerring was the most recognized anatomist by 1800. He had a distinguished career as a professor of medicine in Germany, but his fame really began with this book, the first of his wonderfully illustrated anatomies of the sense organs.  The book contains numerous copperplate engravings and outlines. Soemmerring also wrote on embryology and the lungs as well as numerous topics in natural history, including experiments with electricity.

The Home Book of Modern Medicine - Kellogg

   In this huge volume, Dr. Kellogg of the Battle Creek Sanitarium discusses the many ways to improve and protect human health that are available to the modern person in the early part of the twentieth century.

  Kellogg became famous for his work at the famous sanitarium. His advice on ways that people could treat their own ailments included detailed instructions on exercise and diet.


  The picture is of a vibrating chair used to improve circulation.


   xxWB 120 K29m 1914

Fünffter Theil der Bücher und Schrifften - Paracelsus

PARACELSUS Sudhoff 220-220a 1589

This volume is just one of the hundreds of works by the early modern author known as Paracelsus that are housed in the Bernard Becker Library. Paracelsus worked as a physician across Europe and wrote on a wide range of topics, including theology, surgery, pharmacology, and cosmology.

The work of Johann Huser to publish a complete set of the non-theological works of Paracelsus did much to ensure their survival through the centuries. This book comes from the first set of ten volumes that Huser printed in 1589, and it contains several different medical texts.



Medicine: An Historical Outline - Seelig

xxWZ 40 S452m 1925

Dr. Seelig offered eight evening lectures on the history of medicine to the fourth-year students at Washington University School of Medicine in 1925. This book presents all of those lectures. They depict the great medicine men of history as well as some discussion of the role that health care played in past cultures.

Elementa physiologiae corporis humani - von Haller

x610.9 H185e 1757-1766

This text contains von Haller's comprehensive treatise on anatomy and physiology. In it, he provides data on the structure and composition of each part of the human body, including his recognition of the role of bile in digestion and his theories of embryology.

Subject Guide

Historia musculorum hominis - Albinus

x610.9 A337h 1734

This is an early work of anatomy by Bernhard Albinus. The book contains detailed descriptions of the various muscle groups of the human body and four engravings by Wandelaar.

Cactaceae of the Boundary - Engelmann

xxQK 142 E58c 1858 OVERSIZE

George Engelmann was one of the founding members of the St. Louis Medical Society early on in his career. Maintaining a widespread correspondence with the leading botanists of the day even as he worked as a physician, he made significant contributions to the description of North American species, especially those of the cactus family.

His report on the plants found by the surveyors of the southern border, which was illustrated by Paul Roetter, was a significant work in the field of botany.

Red Medicine - Newsholme & Kingsbury

xxW 225 Gr9 N558r 1934

This book reports on the authors' investigation into Soviet medicine. They felt that many of the problems in it were due to the late development of the region but that the government was well on its way to its goal of free healthcare for all. The writers thought that elements of this system could serve as a model for programs to protect the health of people in democratic countries. Making every attempt to be clear sighted about what they found, Newsholme and Kingsbury were much less enthusiastic for the Russian system than other Depression-era reporters on the Soviet Union.

Ophthalmographia - Briggs

BECKER B854 1686

Briggs was a physician in Cambridge and a friend of Isaac Newton when the first edition was published in 1676. Ophthamographia explains his original studies in visual anatomy and physiology, describing the retina as responsible for vision. This edition is paired with his New Theory of Vision which discusses how the optical nerves handle binocular vision.

Poisons - Mead

x610.9 M479 1747

The first book of a man who would go on to become one of the highest regarded physicians in Britain, this work covers the history, symptoms, biology, chemistry, and treatment of poisons. The essays discuss poison from the bites of animals such as vipers, tarantulas, and scorpions, as well as other sources like mercury, hemlock, and cherry pits. The final chapter deals with the effects of poisonous airs on the spread of epidemic diseases.

Most Celebrated Voyages - Mavor

BALL M461h 1797

This is a book of travelers' narratives that includes a story of various journeys through Scandinavia, China and Turkey. This is just one volume from a thirteen piece set covering the great exploration literature of the Modern Age with an eye for the most exciting stories.

Our copy appears to have come from the private library of William Beaumont.

It contains a small number of etchings to illustrate the tales. This one is labeled: A Lapland Wizard Bargaining for Wind.

Ganka shin-sho - von Plenck

BECKER P725 1815-1816

This book, Ganka shin-sho (A new work on ophthalmology), is a 1815 translation of Plenck's Verhandling over de oogziekten, which originally appeared in Latin. The first five volumes contain the translation by Sugita Rikkyo, while the final volume is a 1816 supplement written by Matsuda Kinsai. It introduced European eye science to Japan.

Anatomy of the Brain - Dalton

xxWL 307 D152t 1885

Only 250 copies were made of this work in 1885, but it proved to be a fantastic textbook for the study of the brain; one that influenced neurology for many years. Dalton prepared the brain specimens himself and then supervised the work to create 48 photographs of the brain from every angle and in numerous cross-sections. The photographs are accompanied by explanatory sketches done by Dr. Richmond Lennox and by descriptions of the anatomy. Not only was the anatomical work in this book impressive, but the photography was an excellent example of the highest standards of publishing of the time.

Report on Yellow Fever

xxWC 530 S145r 1879

This report was commissioned by the medical society in response to an epidemic of Yellow Fever that struck the Mississippi River Valley in 1878. The disease quickly spread along the trade routes of the region to strike the major cities. Memphis reported 5,000 dead. St. Louis only had 71 deaths out of 151 cases. However, up to that point people had believed that St. Louis was safe from Yellow Fever, so the report sought to explain the 23 deaths of local inhabitants.

Animal Parasites - van Beneden

xxQL 757 B462a 1876

This book was translated into English as part of the International Scientific Series. The author was a prominent Belgian zoologist who had been educated as a medical doctor before becoming the curator of the natural history museum in Louvain. Later, he became a professor of comparative anatomy at the university, where he had long career and published over two hundred zoological papers. Many of them were on his specialty, parasitology. 

De systemate mundi - Galileo

CID G158 1641

Galileo Galilei (1564-1642) first published the Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World Systems in 1632, over fifteen years after his heliocentric ideas had been denounced by the Inquisition. The Dialogue set off a new wave of controversy when it appeared. Galileo was forced to recant his position and because of this book, he spent the rest of his life under house arrest. It remained on the Catholic Church's list of forbidden books for 150 years. Of course, Galileo's exposition on the Copernican system was largely correct and it set the path for thinkers to further develop notions of the the solar system until Newton established a whole new understanding of physics in the 18th century.

De omnibus humani corporis - Mondino

BALL M741d 1531

Mondino de' Luzzi (Mundinus) (1275-1326) was a Bolognese pharmacist's son who became an anatomist and professor, the founder  of medieval anatomy. His compendium, first produced in 1316, marked the revival of human dissection in Europe and remained popular for 200 years.


Anthropometamorphosis - Bulwer

CID B941 1653

"or, the artificall changling historically presented, in the mad and cruell gallantry, foolish bravery, ridiculous beauty, filthy finenesse, and loathesome loveliness of most nations, fashioning and altering their bodies from the mould intended by nature; with figures of those transfigurations. To which artificiall and affected deformations are added, all the native and nationall monstrosities that have appeared to disfigure the humane fabrick. With a vindication of the regular beauty and honesty of nature. And an appendix of the pedigree of the English gallant."

This book on the many different ways that people around the world and throughout history have adorned their bodies looks at decoration as a common human trait. Many scholars consider it one of the earliest works of cultural anthropology.