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The Pathology Museum Spring Seminar Series: Ghosts, body snatchers and Sherlock Holmes

The Spring Seminar Series at Queen Mary, University of London’s Pathology Museum is set to kick off in April with public lectures on sensational nineteenth-century science, ghosts, Arctic exploration and the history of pioneering Victorian female doctors.

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The Pathology Museum
The Pathology Museum

The evening events, which take place from April until June, are broadly themed around the link between medicine and the humanities. Academics from some of the UK’s leading universities will speak on a diverse range of topics, including forensic archaeology and the ancient mummy, infanticide, body snatchers, Sherlock Holmes and London’s lost medical museums.

The Pathology Museum, housed within the grounds of St. Bartholomew’s Hospital at West Smithfield, has become a popular venue for unique evening events that promise a fascinating insight into a wide range of subjects.

On Wednesday 18 April 2012 Professor Iwan Rhys Morus of Aberystwyth University will speak on ‘Science and the Senses’. He will be followed by Dr Claire Brock, a lecturer at the University of Leicester’s School of English who specialises in the role of early female doctors and scientists and late eighteenth and nineteenth century women’s fiction.

Dr Brock is currently working on a project entitled Women Surgeons in Britain, 1860-1918, for which she has been awarded a Wellcome Trust Research Leave Award. Her lecture on 18 April, 'Risk, Responsibility, and the Female Surgeon, 1890-1910', examines women's place in the surgical revolution of the late nineteenth century and beyond. She will look at the sort of operations women performed, with evidence from hospital records, case notes and research papers from the era.

The series continues on Wednesday 25 April as the Museum hosts the University of Leicester’s Dr Shane McCorristine speaking on 'The Ethereal Woman in Victorian Arctic Exploration'. He will be joined by Dr Tatiana Kontou of the University of Sussex, an expert in the supernatural, theatricality and myth in Victorian and Edwardian literature, with her talk 'Florence Marryat and Maternal Impressions: from the spiritualistic to the literary'.

All events are free to enter, open to the public and begin at 6.30pm unless otherwise stated.

Booking is essential for all seminars. Please visit to book your place.

For further information, contact Carla Connolly on 020 7882 8766 or email

Pathology Museum (3rd Floor Robin Brook Centre)
St Bartholomews Hospital
West Smithfield
EC1A 6BQ London
United Kingdom


Full programme of events:

18th April

Prof Iwan Rhys Morus: ‘Science and the Senses’

Dr Claire Brock: ‘Risk, Responsibility and the Female Surgeon’


25th April

Dr. Shane McCorristine: 'The Ethereal Woman in Victorian Arctic Exploration' 

Dr. Tatiana Kontou: 'Florence Marryat and Maternal Impressions: from the spiritualistic to the literary'


2nd May

Dr Martin Willis: ‘Catalepsy, Case Notes and George Eliot’

Kirsty Chilton from the Old Operating Theatre Museum: ‘Bart’s, Bellingham and the Body Snatchers’


9th May

Dr. Anna Maerker: ‘Models vs Specimens - Debating the utility of artificial anatomies in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries’

Dr. Catherine Watson: ‘In my opinion it was a child at full time- Infanticide in English and Welsh Medico-Legal Practice, 1730-1914’


16th May

Karen Howell from the Old Operating Theatre Museum on the curation of Medical Collections

Dr. Alan Bates: 'London's Lost Anatomy Museums'


30th May

Dr. Karl Harrison: ‘Case Studies in Forensic Archaeology’

Dr. Roger Luckhurst: ‘The Mummy Unwrapp’d!’


13th June

Dr Tiffany Watt-Smith: ‘Turning aside and looking askance: body parts and the choreography of spectatorship’

Jen Wallis: ‘Disturbing images ... not to be produced: Visualising Pathology in the Nineteenth-Century Asylum’


27th June

Alistair Duncan of the Sherlock Holmes Society: 'A Study in Barts - Sherlock Holmes, John Watson and England's Great Hospital.'

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