February Half Term Event: The Victorian A & E Hospital

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Victorian Surgery Talk

Talk | Saturdays at 2:00 PM and Sundays at Noon

A surgical demonstration presented within the original architecture of the old operating theatre of St. Thomas’s Hospital of 1822.

Getty Tondal Simon Marmion1475A

Demons, Revenants and Nightmares: Fear and Dreaming in the Middle Ages

Talk | 21 February, 2019, 7:00 PM

How did people dream in the past? Do other cultures and time periods have different types of nightmares? Join Dr Bill MacLehose for a discussion of the dark side of the medieval world of dreams, as we explore the ways fear entered people’s dreams in the middle ages. We will look closely at the history of the medical condition called the incubus, in which sufferers awoke unable to move and often imagined that they were being attacked by a demon or other creature.


Fearing the Beast: Animal Attacks and Medical Practice in the Middle Ages

Talk | 18 April, 2019, 7:00 PM

​Animals and humans lived in close proximity in the medieval period. Both the reality of animal bites and the fear of the event loomed large in the medieval imagination. This talk will examine this subject from the writings of medical authors and practitioners, in order to understand what animals were especially feared and what actions could be taken to either prevent an attack or the best remedial measures afterwards, from eating walnuts when going through a snake-infested area to applying ointments on cat bites.


Overcoming Fear: A Tale of Cobras, Chloroform and Consumption. The Life, Times and Influence of Joseph T Clover.

Talk | 29 May, 2019, 7:00 PM

​ In the middle of the 19th century, a new participant entered the operating theatre. Sitting at the end of the operating table, largely unnoticed, the anaesthetist watched over the patient, observing everything around them. Many who took that seat were students, junior doctors, nurses, or even porters, but some were doctors who had elected to specialise in this emerging branch of medicine. One of these doctors was unique.

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The Gore Tour

Talk | Sundays at 2:00 PM

In this tour, the museum's resident researcher, Kirsty Chilton, will invite the public to take a visual tour through some of the most grizzly and terrifying surgical instruments ever designed and how they were used in the Georgian and Victorian Era. The surgical knives, the amputation saws, the trephines, and forceps are just a sample of objects used in the past and they will be presented live through our object handling collection.

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