Plague doctor, 17th century artwork

Plague doctor, 17th century artwork

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Credit: SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Plague doctor. 17th century artwork titled 'Doktor Schnabel von Rom' (Beak Doctor from Rome). The text is in Latin. The costume's bronze mask contained aromatic herbs and reduced exposure to 'bad air', as did gloves and an oiled undergarment and cloak. Bubonic plague (the Black Death) affected Europe from the 1340s to the 1700s, killing millions. This German artwork, by Paul Furst (1608-1666), is based on an earlier work by J. Columbina, and dates from 1656. This version is from 'Die Karikatur und Satire in der Medizin' (Caricature and Satire in Medicine, 1921) by the German art historian and physician Eugen Hollander (1867-1932).

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