The anatomy of the humane body : illustrated with twenty-three copper plates of the most considerable parts; all done after the life.
Cheselden, William, 1688-1752
Printed for N. Cliff and D. Jackson ..., and W. Innys ...,
xxiii, 269,  p.; 20 x 12 cm.
Before his appointment in 1718 as surgeon at St. Thomas's Hospital, William Cheselden had studied anatomy under William Cowper. He himself became the leading teacher of anatomy in eighteenth-century London. His pupils included Percivall Pott, William and John Hunter, and Astley Cooper. Cheselden introduced the formal teaching of anatomy as a prerequisite for surgical practice. In his own practice he achieved preeminence in operations for cataract and bladder stones. One of his ophthalmological patients was Alexander Pope, who commemorated him, together with Richard Mead, in a line of his Imitation of Horace. He also attended Sir Isaac Newton on his deathbed, and in 1727 was appointed surgeon to Queen Caroline. Cheselden was a surgeon of great skill, and was said to have been able to perform a lithotomy within fifty-four seconds, at a charge of £500. The anatomy of the humane body, written when he was twenty-five, was designed as a textbook for his students. In fact it remained the standard anatomical textbook for the rest of the century. By 1792 it had gone through thirteen editions, and was still in print in America in 1806. The original twenty-three plates, engraved by various artists, but mostly by Sutton Nicholls, were increased to forty, re-engraved by Gerard van der Gucht, in the edition of 1740.
Choulant-Frank, p. 261; Heirs of Hippocrates 512-514; LeFanu, Lilly, p. 106-107; Roberts & Tomlinson, p. 427-429; H.F. Norman 464-466; Russell, p. xxxv-xxxvi; DNB; K.F. Russell, 'The Osteographia of William Cheselden,' Bulletin of the history of medicine, v. 28 (1954), 32-49; DNB; W. LeFanu, 'Anatomical drawings by Jacobus Schinjvoet,' Oud-Holland, v. 75 (1960), 54-58; 'Cheselden's anatomy drawings,' Annals of the Royal College of Surgeons, v. 23 (1957), 123.
Jason A. Hannah Collection
Cliff, NathanielJackson, DavidInnys, William, d. 1756