Thursday, February 01, 2007

De Humani Corporis Fabrica

Historical evidence has it that when Andreas Vesalius began his monumental work on anatomy, De Humani Corporis Fabrica, some four hundreds years ago, he approached the great Venetian master Titian to produce the large number of plates required for the volume. The unrivaled artistry of these anatomical descriptions, executed by Titian and some of his students, has never been equaled in similar works. Now an intriguing problem comes up. Vesalius obviously knew a great deal more than Titian about internal medical anatomy. Vesalius, hailed as the Reformer of Anatomy, was in the process of making new discoveries in anatomical structure that Titian could not have learned beforehand. How did it happen that Titian, a master in art, knew better than Vesalius the visual description and correct delineation of anatomical human form?

Burne Hogarth
Dynamic Anatomy

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