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The original drama of operating theatres

The live spectacle of public surgery – and the origin of the operating ‘theatre’ – began with dissections for paying audiences in the 16th century. Lizzie Enfield uncovers the drama, and the developments that eventually sent surgical extravaganzas behind sterile closed doors.

Words by Lizzie Enfield

  • In pictures

About the author

Colour head and shoulders photograph of writer Lizzie Enfield

Lizzie Enfield

Lizzie Enfield is a journalist and regular contributor to national newspapers, magazines and radio. She has written five novels, and had her short stories broadcast on BBC Radio 4.