Tuesday, June 30, 2015

The Bird Doctor

I find these images so strange because they depict the uniform of the Plague doctors who were wide spread during the European Plagues from 1690 onwards. The plagues biblical proportions created a human reaction in people that needed an almost magical antidote. The doctor has become a bird so as to take on a shamanic appearance to protect themselves from the miasma thought to cause the plague.

Bird doctor from paintwalk a plague doctor from 1690
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 (Translation) Clothing of doctors and other people who visit the Plague victims. It is made of Moroccan Leather. The mask eyes are of crystal and the long nose is full of ointments.
He would carry a brush and mark on the doors of the plague victims that he had visited.

The Doctors were wide spread during the European Plagues from 1690 onwards. They were specifically hired by towns that had many plague victims particularly in times of epidemics. The towns and cities paid their salary, they treated everyone: both rich and poor. 

The Doctors main duties were to become witnesses to numerous wills during the time of Plague epidemics so as to give a public account of the dead. They also practiced bloodletting and other remedies such as putting frogs and leeches on the buboes so as to re balance the humors. The doctors would sometimes charge for special treatments and or false cures at the same time giving their patients advice about their conduct before death.
Bird doctor from paintwalk a plague doctor from 1690

Buy direct from The Artist for £55

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