EXHIBITS: Anatomy Through the Ages

See allHide authors and affiliations

Science  08 Apr 2005:
Vol. 308, Issue 5719, pp. 173
DOI: 10.1126/science.308.5719.173d

If not for its jaunty pose, this muscular figure would look at home in a modern anatomy textbook. But the drawing comes from a series of plates commissioned by the Italian physician Bartolomeo Eustachi in the mid-1500s and published some 150 years later. Readers can see these and more lush medical illustrations at Historical Anatomies from the U.S. National Library of Medicine. The continuing exhibit showcases selected diagrams from 28 anatomical atlases, spanning a 14th century Persian treatise to a 19th century German book on frozen cross sections. Brief backgrounders highlight the innovations in each work and describe the authors. For example, Eustachi (circa 1500–1574) was a traditionalist and opposed the upstarts who were challenging the ancient Roman anatomist Galen, then considered the ultimate authority on the body's structure.


Navigate This Article