University of Edinburgh Collections

The purpose of Ars Anatomica is to signal the existence of, and to encourage research on, some of the most important books on human anatomy in the collections of Edinburgh University Library (EUL) and the library of the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh (RCPE). These books, as well as often being in themselves beautiful objects, were fundamental instruments for the international communication of knowledge about anatomy.

This web site concentrates on the visual aspects of this process of information transfer, which has allowed us to make maximum use of the impressive capabilities of high resolution digital imaging.

Vesalius's De humani corporis fabrica libri septem, printed in 1543, in Basel, by Johannes Oporinus was chosen as the central work. The diffusion of its illustrations in sixteenth-century Europe, both directly and indirectly, is the subject of this online presentation.

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