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Galvanic anthropoplasty, 19th century

Galvanic anthropoplasty, 19th century

C010/7845

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Credit

SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Galvanic anthropoplasty. This was a technique proposed in the 1890s by a doctor named Variot working at a hospital in Paris, France. The aim was to preserve dead bodies by immersing them in a solution of metal salts and then applying an electric current to coat the body in metals. This electroplating (galvanic) technique would have used metals such as bronze, copper, nickel, gold and silver. A newspaper report of 1890 stated that Variot had in his laboratory a 'metallized baby' coated in silver. Artwork from the seventh volume (first period of 1891) of the French popular science weekly 'La Science Illustree'.

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