Somatographia Anthropine, or a Description of the Body of Man

Shakespeare in Print -  Shakespeare’s Printer

#28 Somatographia Anthropine, or a Description of the Body of Man (1634)

In 1615, William Jaggard partnered with Helkiah Crooke to publish Mikrokosmographia, the first anatomy book in English to be compiled by a physician. In a letter to the reader Jaggard explained his interest in the book, writing that anatomy was “a matter much affected by me,” and that he had expended “no mean care and cost” in producing it. Jaggard also published an epitome of Crooke’s book that included only the woodcut illustrations in a smaller, cheaper, and more accessible format. The first edition was attributed to “W.J. Printer.” Taken together, the two books demonstrate Jaggard’s intellectual commitment to and financial investment in the works he chose to publish. This is the second edition of the Somatographia Anthropine, printed by Thomas Cotes in 1634. Cotes had previously reprinted Mikrokosmographia in 1631, so the two books remained companion volumes. One of the early owners of this copy was a woman, who inscribed her name on the title-page (“Anne Hodgson booke”) demonstrating a wider audience for anatomy books beyond physicians. This book is from the collection of the John Martin Rare Book Room, Hardin Library for the Health Sciences.

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