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Doctor's shop sign

The Chinese characters inscribed on the wooden sign translate into English as ‘Doctor for treating miscellaneous diseases’. 25 human teeth are threaded on each of the half metre-long threads. It is unknown why human teeth are used on this doctor’s sign. They likely indicate the doctor specialised in tooth pulling. The human teeth were a visual aid for people who could not read to identify the doctor’s trade.

Object number:

A642963

 

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