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The Oddment Emporium

A Cornucopia of Eclectic Delights

Posts tagged curiosities:

Christmas Card Curiosties

From Christmas Curiosties: Odd, Dark and Forgotten Christmas by John Grossman.

Advent Calendar of Oddments 2012: December 11th 

(Source: doowackadoodles.blogspot.co.uk)

Freaks, Swindlers, Murderers and Eccentrics

A 200-year-old book illustrating ‘freaks, swindlers, murderers and eccentrics’ of the 19th century, such as an Irish Giant and a Hairy Girl, has been discovered. The book is a complete listing of all the ‘wonders, curiosities and rarities of nature’ known to man in 1808 in this Georgian-type freak show display. Entitled The New Wonderful Museum and Extraordinary Magazine, its pages are filled with images and descriptions of a variety of society’s outcasts. While considered politically incorrect by most today, the book was popular in England because it provided evidence of things thought of as folklore.

[More on Peter the Wild Boy here]

(Source: Daily Mail)

Female Urinal
This is the English equivalent to the French bordalou and would have been used in the bed chamber or as portable relief during travel or perhaps as was supposed the case in Paris even during long sermons at church. c.1800-1850.

Female Urinal

This is the English equivalent to the French bordalou and would have been used in the bed chamber or as portable relief during travel or perhaps as was supposed the case in Paris even during long sermons at church. c.1800-1850.

Images from Physica Curiosa a reference book from 1662 written by a German priest named Gaspar Schott and depicting weird and wonderful creatures believed to be in existence, though Schott is thought to have relied largely on second hand reports.

You can read the whole thing HERE, and more information is available HERE.

'Anatomical Venuses' are extremely realistic models of idealised women. These figures consist of removable parts that can be 'dissected' - a breast plate is lifted to reveal the internal organs, often with a fetus in the womb.
In the 19th century, the anatomical Venus formed the centrepiece of museums and travelling shows of all kinds, and possessed great power to draw crowds. ‘Know thyself’ was a common phrase associated with the exhibition of such models, suggesting their educational value.
In the 19th century, despite the best efforts of body snatchers, the demand from medical schools for fresh cadavers far outstripped the supply. One solution to this gruesome problem came in the form of lifelike wax models [some] models were more macabre, showing the body ravaged by ‘social diseases’ such as venereal disease, tuberculosis and alcohol and drug addiction.
With their capacity to titillate as well as educate, anatomical models became sought-after curiosities, displayed not only in dissecting rooms but also in sideshows and the curiosity cabinets of wealthy Victorian gentlemen. For a small admission fee, visitors seeking an unusual afternoon’s entertainment could visit displays of these strange dolls in London, Paris, Brussels and Barcelona.

'Anatomical Venuses' are extremely realistic models of idealised women. These figures consist of removable parts that can be 'dissected' - a breast plate is lifted to reveal the internal organs, often with a fetus in the womb.

In the 19th century, the anatomical Venus formed the centrepiece of museums and travelling shows of all kinds, and possessed great power to draw crowds. ‘Know thyself’ was a common phrase associated with the exhibition of such models, suggesting their educational value.

In the 19th century, despite the best efforts of body snatchers, the demand from medical schools for fresh cadavers far outstripped the supply. One solution to this gruesome problem came in the form of lifelike wax models [some] models were more macabre, showing the body ravaged by ‘social diseases’ such as venereal disease, tuberculosis and alcohol and drug addiction.

With their capacity to titillate as well as educate, anatomical models became sought-after curiosities, displayed not only in dissecting rooms but also in sideshows and the curiosity cabinets of wealthy Victorian gentlemen. For a small admission fee, visitors seeking an unusual afternoon’s entertainment could visit displays of these strange dolls in London, Paris, Brussels and Barcelona.