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James Henry Lambier, "the American giant". Drawing.

Gahagan, L.
1821 [?]

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Credit: James Henry Lambier, "the American giant". Drawing. Credit: Wellcome Collection. Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)

About this work


Lambier walks along the street, towering over the bystanders. He holds copies of his pamphlets bound in blue paper wrappers. In background, shop window of Herbert, shoe maker Lambier was a giant who sold medical remedies, using his great height as an instrument of publicity. Information about him has been found in two pamphlets sold by him: A short and correct account of the life of James Henry Lambier ... the American giant [title from head of text, titlepage wanting], [London: s.n., ca. 1825]; and The American, J.H. Lambier, late a captain in the French Imperial Horse Guards; and one of the largest men in the world. From the United States of America, London: W. Nicks, [ca. 1833]. The pamphlets contain advertisements, and are in themselves advertisements, for the remedies which Lambier offered for sale. The remedies included "Lambier's Most Effectual Cure", which is described in the pamphlets as an oil which could be used for toothache, oil for the gums or scurvy, as a drop in the ear every morning to mitigate deafness or ear-ache, or as a cure for headache when applied to the temples. He also sold worming pills, oils for sprains, an ointment for corns on the foot, and Imperial Aromatic Snuff.



1821 [?]

Physical description

1 drawing : ink wash and watercolour ; sheet 37.7 x 27.4 cm


Wellcome Library no. 550402i

Creator/production credits

Inscription includes word "Gahagain". There was a large family of Irish artists named Gahagan in London, but they are recorded as sculptors only. Possibly by one of the three sculptors named L. Gahagan, after whom there is a print of a sculpture with lettering "L. Gahagan delin."


  • English

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