Pseudo-Galen, Anatomia, in English

Mid 15th Century
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Pseudo-Galen, <i>Anatomia,</i> in English. Public Domain Mark. Source: Wellcome Collection.

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Pseudo-Galen, Anatomia, in English

Written in a larger clear gothic hands, 16 lines to a page.


1. ff. 1r-41r Pseudo-Galen, Anathomia

f. His incipit liber uenerabilem Anotomeum [sic] secundum Galieleni [sic]. Ffyrst of the brane and the hede and membres beyng aboute them or yn them. Sothly the brayn ys soyft yn hys substance... f. 41r ... and [th]e same manner after the/goyng forth. In [th]ese membrys.

2. 41v Quoniam membrorum hu/mani corporis ponens [sic for 'psitiones']/omnino ignorate erant/placuit ueteris [sic] mdi/cis maxime galieno. ut per anathomias/brutorum illii [sic for 'animalium'] interiorum membrorum positiones/manifestarentur... line 13... Porcum/in uersum debes ponere.

3. 42r ANathonia Galieni./ffor knawyng of the ynner/lynies of a mannys body/... 48v (De anathomia venarum)... vena ramosa./for al veynes beth gendryd of hyre what/eur beth yn a body to be nurshyd.

4. 49v-53 The eight coloured illustrations:

49v Nude made figure flesh tinted front view.

50 Nude male figure flesh tinted back view.

50v Human skeleton front view. In black (rubbed).

51 Human skeleton back view. In back.

51v 'Muscle man' in red and black: fron view

52 'Muscle mean' in red and black: back view

52v Pregnant woman, seated legs apart, flesh tinted.

53v 'Wound man': flesh tinted: weapons coloured.

The two skeletons, and the two 'muscle men' have no legends, the other four have legends in Latin.

54-46 Blank.

There are a few marginal notes by a16th cent. owner-mostly anatomical terms.

The text is very considerably abridged, and does not appear to agree with the recorded versions, and this is particularly true of the first work.

The illustrations, though of poor quality, are of interest as being the prototypes of those found in Ketham's Fasciculus medicinae, first printed in 1491.

Large illuminated initials in gold and colours, with marginal leaf and feather ornaments on fff. 1, 29, 37, 41v, 42, 48, 48v. Smaller capitals in gold and colours, with marginal spray ornament on ff. 4v, 5, 6v, 7v, 8v, 9, 9v, 11v, 12v (2), 13v (3), 14v, 17, 18, 18v, 19, 19v, 20, 20v, 21, 21v, 22v, 23, 25(2), 25v, 26v, 27v, 28, 31, 32, 33v, 36, 40. Chapter headings in red: paragraph marks on an unusual from (in alternate gold and blue on a red ground.


Mid 15th Century

Physical description

1 volume 56 ff. (last 3 bl.). 8vo 18 x 13 1/2 cm. On vellum, 19th cent. vellum binding. Margins slightly cropped.

Acquisition note

Purchased at Sotheby's 1/8/1933, Lot 426.

Location of duplicates

Photos of the following are held by Wellcome Images: MS.290, f.52r illustration of a pregnant woman at L0045159, L0045195, L0073908 (all colour), L0013466 (b/w); f.53v Wound man illustration at L0013467 (colour)

Finding aids

Catalogue description modified in 2014. For original description, see S.A.J. Moorat, Catalogue of Western Manuscripts on Medicine and Science in the Wellcome Historical Medical Library (London: Wellcome Institute for the History of Medicine, 1962-1973).

Ownership note

From the Library of Lady Constance Butler. [1879-1949].


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Accession number

  • 66166