A Late 19thC German Anatomical Model of a Liver on Stand c.1890

Origin: German
Period: Late 19thC
Provenance: Unknown
Date: c.1890
Height: 10.5”
Width: 8.75”
Base Diameter: 5.25”

The cast and moulded polychrome painted didactic model of the human liver on a turned ebonised stand, the model being plaster and hand painted with detailed numbered regions of the liver, made by either Bock Steger or Marcus Sommer in late nineteenth century Germany.

There is some chipping to the paint work, with one larger chip to the top right section, though overall it remains intact and complete.

This piece was either made by Bock Steger or Marcus Sommer.

Marcus Sommer started the existing firm Somso in 1876, with Bock Steger being the more famous of the two. If this is by Bock Steger we cannot find another comparable example.

Franz Josef Steger collaborated with pathological anatomist Carl Ernst Bock (1809-1874) at the University of Leipzig to produce models for the instruction of students. These were either direct casts or sculpted in plaster, porcelain or wax. Steger is best known for his plaster models. Steger's instructive models were sold in the mid-1800s through international catalogues and scientific shops in Germany. Steger models are of significant historical interest because of their contribution to anatomical teaching from the late nineteenth century to the present day, and replicas of much of this particular collection (the originals are on display only) are still used in the teaching of anatomy in post-graduate anatomy courses.

If only my liver were this pretty.