Wooden statue of St Adrian, Europe, 1700-1850

1700-1850 in Europe

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Statue of Saint Adrian, invoked against stomach diseases, French(?), 1700-1850

St Adrian, also known as Hadrian, was a Roman convert to Christianity who was martyred in the early 300s CE. He was tortured so severely that at one point his intestines were exposed – which is how he is presented here. Later his limbs and head were removed.

He is venerated within the Roman Catholic Church and the Eastern Orthodox Church, where it is believed that saints can help protect against ill health and cure diseases. Among several attributes, St Adrian has been one of a number of saints invoked against the plague.

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Science Museum: Journeys through Medicine: Henry Wellcome's Legacy

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Classical & Medieval Medicine
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  • visual and verbal communication
  • sculpture
Loan: Wellcome Trust

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