This playful image from a French 15th-century manuscript depicts a topsy-turvy world in which canine patients seek treatment from a rabbit physician wearing eyeglasses. Some years ago, The Morgan was approached by a firm that wished to use the image in an advertisement for imported burgundy. The red liquid in the beaker the rabbit physician is scrutinizing would, it was hoped, illustrate the wine’s superlative body and flavor.
Quaker abolitionist Jacob Heaton was an important figure in the anti-slavery movement. He lived in Salem, Ohio, and his home served both as a stop on the Underground Railway and as a meeting-place for fellow abolitionists and reformers. As Susan B. Anthony, Salmon P. Chase, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, George Thompson, and others passed through his "Quaker Tavern," Heaton invited them to sign his "Record of Friends" -- a scrapbook that he compiled and which contains over 100 entries, letters, poems, photographs, engravings, clippings and ephemera related primarily to the American abolitionist movement.
Catholic Church. Breviary. Breuiarium romanum. Venice: Giovanni Varisco & Company, 1562. Purchased as the gift of Jamie K. Kamph and on the Harper Fund, 2011.
During the trial for his involvement in the raid on Harpers Ferry, abolitionist John Brown declared: "If it is deemed necessary that I should forfeit my life for the furtherance of the ends of justice and mingle my blood with the blood of millions in this slave country whose rights are disregarded by wicked, cruel, and unjust enactments, I say let it be done." The October 16th raid had been a failure -- no slaves were freed and fully half of his men died -- and, after only forty-five minutes of deliberation, John Brown was sentenced to die by the gallows on December 2, 1859.
Curator Christine Nelson honors the lovers who opened their hearts in the diaries now on view at the Morgan.
Francesco Bianchini (1662-1729). Hesperi et Phosphori nova phaenomena, sive, Observationes circa planetam Veneris. Rome: Giovanni Maria Salvioni, 1728. Purchased as the gift of Mr. & Mrs. Rudy L. Ruggles, Jr., and on the L. Colgate Harper Fund, 2010.
Andechs (Germany). Benedictine priory. Chronick dess hochberümbten Closters, vnd Gottshauses, heiligen Berg Andechs, S. Benedicten Ordens, Augspurger Bistthumbs, in Obern Bayrn gelegen. Munich: Johann Jäcklin, 1657. Purchased on the Henry S. Morgan Fund, 2007.
Aelius Donatus. Ars minor. Mainz: Johann Schöffer, ca. 1517-1518. Purchased on the Henry S. Morgan Fund, 2010.
Bartolomeo Pinelli (1781-1835). Album of thirty-seven Italian genre scenes assembled by or for Eugène de Bourbon-Busset, consisting of hand-colored etchings, mostly by Bartolomeo Pinelli, but also by Gaetano Cottafavi and Filippo Ferrari. [Rome: n.p., ca. 1809-1838]. Purchased as the gift of the Visiting Committee of the Department of Printed Books and Bindings in honor of Charles E. Pierce, Jr., and on the Gordon N. Ray Fund, 2008.
Robert Simson (1687-1768). Sectionum conicarum libri V. Edinburgh: T. & W. Ruddiman, 1735. Purchased as the gift of Rudy L. Ruggles, Jr., and on the Dannie and Hettie Heineman Fund, 2009.