Historical Anatomies on the Web map Introduction Browse Titles Titles to be Added Historical Anatomies Home History of Medicine Division National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health

Anonymous Persian Anatomical Illustrations. [Iran or Pakistan, ca. 1680-1750].

Bloodletting and Venous Figures

The National Library of Medicine refers to this anonymous and undated manuscript as, Two Anatomical Drawings: a bloodletting figure and a venous figure (MS P 5, fol. A). The work consists of two anatomical drawings occurring on one side of a loose sheet of paper discovered inside a copy made in 1681 (1092 by the Islamic calendar) of the Persian-language medical enyclopedia Zakhirah-i Khvarazm'Shahi written by Jurjani. The anatomical figures, however, are on very different paper from that of the main volume and appear to have been drawn sometime in the 18th century. The loose sheet has been designated "MS P 5 fol. A" and is now placed in a separate folder. The two figures are drawn on the same side of the piece of paper. A fold at the midpoint separates the two figures.

The righthand figure shows the venous system, with the internal organs colored with opaque watercolors and some of the veins labeled. It is clearly derivative from the venous figures usually associated with the Tashrih-i Mansuri of Ibn Ilyas, examples of which can be seen in NLM (MS P 18) fol. 25b and (MS P 19) fol. 16b.

The lefthand figure has the bloodletting points labeled in a mixture of Persian and Arabic. This figure is clearly derivative from similar illustrations in late-medieval European manuscripts.