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Charles Bell (1774-1842) by William Theed, 1851.
Certificate of attendance, Charles Bell’s Great Windmill Street Anatomy School, London
Certificate of attendance, Charles Bell’s Great Windmill Street Anatomy School, London, 1825. The engraving is by Bell’s brother John Bell from The Principles of Surgery, Vol. II, Part II, 1806.
Lymph vessels of a portion of the jejunem injected with mercury. Bell Collection BC.xii.5.N.4 GC 12073
The skeleton of a woman who suffered from osteomalacia, the adult form of rickets, later found out to be caused by a deficiency in vitamin D. It had originally been in John and Charles Bell’s anatomy school collection in Edinburgh. Bell Collection BC.1.3.M.24 GC 13690.
Vas-deferens of the epidymis and spermatic cord injected with metallic mercury. Bell Collection BC.xv.1.N.12 GC 11917
Charles Bell, 'Illustrations of the great operations of surgery,' 1821
Charles Bell, plate from 'Illustrations of the great operations of surgery,' 1821, a classic technical text on surgery, it also includes Bell’s views on the responsibility of the surgeon. The plate shown is of an open wound in the head after the surgical procedure of trephination (drilling a hole in the skull).Fragments of the skull are also shown with a numbered guide relating to where each part had been removed.
Thoracic aorta with aneurysm
The Charles Bell catalogue entry states: ‘An aneurism of the descending Thoracic Aorta. The Patient lay long in the Middlesex Hospital being kept very low, and occasionally bled. His sufferings were by no means so acute, as we would imagine must necessarily result from such extensive disease, and not nearly so much as we find in Patients who having affections of the Heart, afford no morbid appearance on dissection. The tumour has burst through to the back part, where it formed a very large Tumour during life, notwithstanding the distance of this posterior sac, from the Heart. The pulsation of the Tumour was at all times very distinct: though we learn that such Anuerisms have been mistaken for chronic abcess. He died exhausted from weakness.’ Bell Collection BC.xii.2.M.57. GC 11006.
Aorta with aneurysm
Bell’s catalogue entry states: ‘Aorta having an Aneurism at the place of the coeliac arteries, distended and dried from a Woman about forty five years of age who was a patient in the Middlesex Hospital, and was treated for a complaint in her Uterus, no blood was found effused. There are specks of ossific concretion near the Situation of the rupture of the Artery. The Womb was extensively diseased.’ Bell Collection BC. xii.2M.56. GC 11012.
Charles Bell, 'Illustrations of the great operations of surgery, '1821
Charles Bell, plate IX from 'Illustrations of the great operations of surgery,' 1821, showing three views of the amputation of the thigh. Bell’s aim was to arm the surgeon with professional advantage so ‘that he may not go groping his way.’
Heart with wound
Heart showing a lacerated wound at the apex of the left ventricle caused by a pistol ball which lodged in the body of the thoracis vertebra. The hollow in the portion of the vertebra attached indicates the size of the missile. Bell Collection BC.xvii.51 GC 10866