METROPOLITAN MUSEUM OF ART / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY METROPOLITAN MUSEUM OF ART / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
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Hypnotism session. Daguerreotype showing four people being hypnotised by a doctor. Photographed in around 1845 by US photographer John Adams Whipple (1822-1891). At this time, hypnotism was extensively used by doctors in Europe and the USA. By 1848, the use of chloroform as an anaesthetic mostly ended the medical practice of hypnotism. Here, a doctor has hypnotised four seated subjects. The medical theory of magnetic sleep held that a magnetic fluid emanated from a hypnotism operator to the patient.
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