Rotten Corpses, a Disembowelled Woman, a Flayed Man. Images of the Body from the End of the 17th to the Beginning of the 19th Century. Florentine Wax Models in the First-hand Accounts of Visitors
- Perspectives on Science
- The MIT Press
- Volume 14, Number 4, Winter 2006
- pp. 417-456
- Additional Information
This article analyses some of the anatomical waxes in the Museo della Specola in Florence. Executed in at least two different periods in the history of Florentine wax modelling (in the late 17th century and between the 18th and 19th centuries), they project culturally determined images of the body which are analysed from a historico-semiotic perspective. "Rotten corpses," a "disembowelled woman" and a "flayed man" emerge as salient figures in the collection and reveal the close tie between anatomical representations and aesthetics, social relations and religious scruples, in other words, the culture tout court which produced them.