Origin: American
Period: Late 19thC
Provenance: Unknown
Date: c.1886
Open: 69” high x 23.5” wide
Closed: 34.5” high x 23.5” wide

The scarce life size manikin comprising of two folding panels opening vertically with chromolithographed flaps for both halves of torso, arms, hands, legs, feet, the head, as well as a large ear and large eye, opening to reveal various layers of a male human body, the flaps held down with with movable metal tabs, the whole illustrating tissue groups, sectional views of the body, internal organs and muscles and retailed and published by Ballière, Tindall, & Cox, 20 and 21, King William Street, Strand.

There is some discoloration, spotting and surface wear consistent with age, with creasing as per the photographs. The only section of loss is the absent left foot, otherwise he remains fully in tact. There are about three metal pins missing.

James White was a publisher, poet, etc. He was considered a bit of a Renaissance man in his day. In 1886, he founded a publishing company in NYC and this was one of his products.

This wonderful, nearly life-sized anatomical "manikin" was used primarily by medical students, giving an internal view of the human body, including the muscles, tendons, arteries, bones, joints, digestive organs, heart, lungs, and reproductive organs. The life-sized folding chart of is of portable construction, adapted to the use of school-teachers and lecturers, as well as for private families. The whole display, when folded, is contained in a convenient-sized portfolio to carry in the hand. the chart was constructed to hang against the wall, with the upper section being formed of a single sheet or card and the lower half or section being formed of any number of cards or leaves, to furnish additional charts, typically composed of enlarged microscopic sections.

By the early Renaissance, scientists and artists were chipping away at this anatomical inscrutability, and illustration was proving a particularly effective way to spread what was being learned via human dissection. There remained one nagging issue, however: accurately representing the body’s three-dimensional structure on a flat, two-dimensional piece of paper. Some artists relied on creative uses of perspective to solve the problem. Others began using flaps. Eventually, ever larger flap contributions appeared, such as this one and this wall-friendly model was meant for classrooms and doctor’s offices. Among other things, it showcased “the form, position, color, and relation of the organs of a healthy body,” according to “Hidden Treasure.” It also had some morally instructive flaps that depicted “the effects of alcohol and narcotics on the human stomach, and the deformation of the female rib cage caused by corsetry.”

Jean-Baptiste Bailliere (1795-1885) founded the medical and scientific publishing house of Bailliere in Paris in 1818. It thrived and diversified through the efforts of various members of the family. Jean-Baptiste’s brother Hippolyte set up a branch of the business in London in 1830 and his nephews began a related business, Bailliere Brothers, in New York and Melbourne. In 1870 Albert Alfred Tindall purchased the London business of Messrs Bailliere & Co., maintained its international links and expanded. Although his son took over the running of the business he remained the senior partner until his death, aged 90, in 1931.

Knife-less dissection never got more desirable.