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Special Collections

Description of Special Collection

Collection Level Description: Kellett Collection
University Library

Collection Level Description: Kellett Collection

Collection name: Kellett Collection
Collection code: Kellett
Date range: 16th-20th century
Extent: 250 items
Language: English; Latin
Created by: Dr. Charles Ernest Montchal Kellett (1903-1978), physician and historian of medicine
Held by: Durham University Library, Archives and Special Collections

A collection on the history of medicine formed by Dr C.E. Kellett (1908-78), and given by himself and his executors.
The theme of the collection is European medicine of the 16th and 17th centuries, particularly developments in anatomical teaching and illustration in France and Italy. Built around the writings of the 16th century French physician Jean Fernel and his circle, it also includes the classical and medieval sources on which they drew, and the later writers they influenced.
It contains over 200 items printed up to 1800, and nearly 500 later items, a mixture of secondary studies and editions of primary texts, together with photostats, slides, and working papers for Dr. Kellett's publications and lectures on medical iconography. The older books are mainly foreign (74 of the 16th century), including v. 1 of the very rare second collected edition of Galen (Venice, 1502), Vidius's Chirurgia (1544) and Estienne's De Dissectione (1545).
About the creator:
Charles Ernest Montchal Kellett, FRCP (1903-1978) was both a practitioner and a historian of medicine. As a practitioner his early career was in paediatrics, but he later moved into general medicine, becoming senior physician at the Newcastle upon Tyne General Hospital, and lecturing in clinical medicine and the history of medicine at the University of Newcastle upon Tyne. His interest in the history of medicine developed early, as did his love of book collecting, and the one informed the other throughout his life. The Renaissance was the period which most deeply engaged his interest as a historian, and he published numerous articles on his researches into aspects of the history of anatomical illustration.
Presented by Dr. Kellett and his executors
Open for consultation.
Permission to make any published use of material from the collection must be sought in advance from the Sub-Librarian, Special Collections (e-mail and, where appropriate, from the copyright owner. The Library will assist where possible with identifying copyright owners, but responsibility for ensuring copyright clearance rests with the user of the material.
The collection is in the main catalogue. To restrict the search to this collection, do a shelfmark search on shelfmark "Kellett" - or use the following URL
Related collections held at Durham:
Kellett Manuscripts
Kellett slides
C.E. Kellett, "Two Medicines", The Medical World (9 Feb 1945).
E. Rainey, The Practical Art of Medicine: Early Books from the Kellett Collection, (Durham, University Library, 1989). Exhibition catalogue, with introductory account of the collection and collector.

Index terms

Kellett, Charles Ernest Montchal, 1903-1978.
Anatomical illustration -- History.
Anatomy -- History.
Medicine -- History.

Date last modified: 14 January 2009