The Science and Art of Medicine


On Display

A herbal medicine called a ma'jun, meaning sweet medicine, used by practitioners of Unani Tibb. Herbs are mixed with honey to make them sweet and preserve their freshness. Honey is considered to have important healing powers.

Double obstetrical fillet, 1851-1900.

This instrument was used for making traction on the foetus during childbirth. It is thought to be composed of whalebone and was manufactured by Wood of York.

Perpetual calendar, English, 1822-1869.

This calendar was designed for calculating the time of parturition � childbirth � and is made out of wood and ivory. The outer wheel is divided into four parts labelled: Conception, Quickening, Foetus Viable, and Parturition. It was manufactured by F

Medicine chest, c 1800.

Medicine chest, winged front, from Reece's Medical Hall, Piccadilly, with 30 painted glass bottles and 4 drawers, 5 confection glasses, 1 probang, 3 boxes, 1 plaster spreader, 1 seal, 1 spatula, 1 bowl, 1 pill tile, 1 fleam, 1 lancet, 2 syringes, 4

Mahogany medicine chest, 19th century.

Mahogany medicine chest, C19


A plastic sachet containing Joshanda, a Unani Tibb herbal medicine used to treat flu, coughs and colds. Unani Tibb medicines have been produced commercially for about 70 years in India, Pakistan and Bangladesh.

Ancient Egyptian amulet representing the god Thoth, 4000-30 BC.

Amulet representing the god Thoth, Ancient Egyptian, 4000-30 BC. Carved from the blue rock, lapis lazuli, Thoth was one of the most popular Egyptian gods and had multiple roles in Egyptian mythology. He was the god of wisdom, writing and the moon, t

Roman glass bottles, 3rd to 5th century AD.

Glass bottle, long neck, two handles, Roman, 251-450AD. Glass appears to have been produced as far back as the second millennium BC by the Egyptians and perhaps the Phoenicians. Around the end of the 1st century BC glass-blowing was developed, whereb

Roman vaginal speculum, 100 BC-400 AD.

Bronze vaginal speculum, probably Roman, found in the Lebanon, made c. 100BC to 400AD, although the screw part is modern. It comprises a priapiscus with dovetailing valves which are opened and closed by a handle with a screw mechanism. It shows the r

Phlebotomy measuring device, Egyptian, c 1354.

Model of a blood letting device as described by muslim scholar Al-Jazari in AD 1204-6, and reconstructed in 1977. It measured the blood lost during phlebotomy (blood-letting) sessions, a popular therapy in the Arab world. It is illustrated in Al-Jaza