Most people’s opinion of Robert Knox is entirely one-dimensional, superficial and prejudiced by the standard narrative of the Burke and Hare affair. Knox was vilified in the press yet the 10 or so private anatomy schools that flourished around Edinburgh University, had they been approached, would not have turned Burke and Hare away. They all needed bodies and none of them delved into the source of the hundreds of bodies they all received each year from shady and anonymous ‘resurrectionists’. In fact Knox was a brilliant anatomist and a complex and interesting individual. He treated the wounded at Waterloo, served in South Africa as an army surgeon and spent a year in Paris along with the most forward thinking of UK surgeons, learning the new science of anatomical pathology. He was no doubt a conceited and difficult person and he did have shocking and unacceptable views regarding race, but he was an interesting individual whose fascinating life is documented in this talk.
The talk will last approximately 1 hour and then the museum will be open until 9pm for ticket holders only.