Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Amusing historical anecdote of the day!

From Peter the Great: His Life and World, by Robert K. Massie.

In Leyden [in 1697], Peter visited the famous Dr. Boerhaave. . . . He also visited Boerhaave's dissection theater, where a corpse was lying on a table with some of its muscles exposed. Peter was studying the corpse with fascination when he heard grumbles of disgust from some of his squeamish Russian comrades. Furious, and to the horror of the Dutch, he ordered them to approach the cadaver, bend down and bite off a muscle of the corpse with their teeth.
To the horror of the Dutch? How about the guys with mouths full of corpse?

Update: Could they spit it out, or did they have to swallow?

Update II: Probably wasn't a fresh corpse, either.

Update III: Think that's gross? Wait till I wield power by divine right.

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