Monday, January 2, 2017

"Harvard discovers a few of its library books are bound in human flesh"

A few years ago, three separate books were discovered in Harvard University's library that had particularly strange-looking leather covers. Upon further inspection, it was discovered that the smooth binding was actually human flesh... in one case, skin allegedly harvested from a man who was flayed alive. Yep, definitely the creepiest library ever.

As it turns out, the practice of using human skin to bind books was actually pretty popular during the 17th century. It's referred to as Anthropodermic bibliopegy and proved pretty common when it came to anatomical textbooks. Medical professionals would often use the flesh of cadavers they'd dissected during their research. Waste not, want not, I suppose.

Harvard's creepy books deal with Roman poetry, French philosophy, and a treatise on medieval Spanish law for which the previously mentioned flayed skin was supposedly used. The book, Practicarum quaestionum circa leges regias… has a very interesting inscription inside, as The Harvard Crimson reports.

Via Drudge: For more go here

13 comments:

Eric the Fruit Bat said...

Tan me hide when I'm dead, Fred.

chickelit said...

Hide-bound truth is bound to hide truth.

ampersand said...

I hope they don't have "Diary of a Mad Mohel"

Trooper York said...

Actually a famous Mohel from Odessa wrote a manual about performing the briss properly which was covered in babies foreskins.

If you rubbed it got the entire Encyclopedia Britannica.

deborah said...

I hate it when that happens.

AprilApple said...

The Alfred Packer diaries?

chickelit said...

The Annals of Gein-ecology?

Lem said...

I got nothing but skin in the game and it doesn't even fit.

Lem said...

Don't judge a book by its cover... now you know the rest of the story.

Lem said...

Improved: "Never judge a book by the cover"; early Social Justice slogan.

chickelit said...

Lem, the story didn't mention whether the skins were all melanin-challenged so there's no reason to assume discrimination. No need for SJW's -- yet.

chickelit said...

It's been revealed that one of the books not mentioned was a first edition of W. Somerset Maugham's "Of Human Binding"

Methadras said...

Who here wants to make bets that this will be blamed on the patriarchy, racism, and slavery?