Online Exhibits@Yale

Historical Illustrations of Skin Disease: Selections from the New Sydenham Society Atlas 1860-1884

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The Atlas of Skin Diseases was among the first publications undertaken, in 1859, by the New Sydenham Society.

Time-consuming and costly to produce, it was issued in seventeen parts over a period of twenty-four years.

In this exhibit, Yale dermatologists Jean Bolognia and Irwin Braverman present the celebrated nineteenth century illustrations to a current clinical audience, making a relevant teaching point with each plate.  Twenty-five of the Atlas’ forty-nine plates were selected for display in the Cushing/Whitney Medical Library, although all are available online.  They depict cutaneous diseases ranging from the common, e.g. psoriasis and eczema, to the rare, e.g. iododerma and systematized epidermal nevi.  Examples of skin signs of systemic disease, including Addison’s disease, neurofibromatosis, and lupus erythematosus, are also shown.  The emotional toll which these chronic diseases inflicted upon patients is a striking feature of the many portraits.

Credits

The exhibit is curated by Drs. Jean Bolognia and Irwin Braverman, Professors of Dermatology at the Yale University School of Medicine, and Susan Wheeler, Curator of Prints and Drawings at the Cushing/Whitney Medical Library.