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Degas: a passion for perfection

The Fitzwilliam Museum will mark the centenary of Degas’s death with an exhibition that will exhibit its holdings of works by the artist – the most extensive and representative in the UK.

What's On headline sponsor:

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This 13th century manuscript shows a doctor performing head surgery while his patient holds a bowl to collect the blood.

Under the knife at St John’s: A medical history of disease and dissection

Sat 25 March

St John's College

This exhibition features treasures from the Special Collections at St John’s College that relate to the history of medicine. The manuscripts, incunabula, artefacts and illustrations on display demonstrate medical beliefs and perceptions from as early as the 13th century and feature plenty of potions, plague and pestilence. In an age when religious sentiments inhibited human dissection, what was known about the inner workings of the human body? How were early surgeries performed and what were the common methods of diagnosis and treatment? The exhibition traces pioneering medical breakthroughs such as the foundation of modern human anatomy, the discovery of blood circulation and the identification of female sex organs, and features the voices of those who fought against quackery with observation, experimentation and reason to provide mankind with justified scientific knowledge.

Cost: free

Ages: All ages

Enquiries and booking

No need to book.

Enquiries: Shelley Hughes, Communications Office Website Email: svh27@cam.ac.uk Telephone: 01223338711


All times

Sat 25 March 11:00AM - 5:00PM


Address: St John's College
The Old Library
St John's College
St John's Street
Telephone: 01223 338600