Under His Own Hand – Rarely visible pieces of the Semmelweis heritage

Date: 2018-05-25

In honour of the 200th anniversary of Ignác Semmelweis’s birth, 2018 was declared Semmelweis Memorial Year by the Hungarian Government. Therefore, as a guardian of the personal and scientific legacy of the scientist, the Semmelweis Museum of Medical History, in its exhibition concept for 2018, has dedicated a prominent role for the figure of Semmelweis and the history of obstetrics. First, they commemorate with an exhibition about the saviour of mothers in his birth house. In addition to the well-known pieces of the scientific life work which were added to the UNESCO World Heritage List in 2013, manuscripts and family records related to Semmelweis are also exposed at the exhibition briefly overviewing his life. These documents have not been visible until now to the general public for reasons of artwork. Among them, for example, a document from the Rókus Hospital about the nomination of Semmelweis, or a letter written to Lajos Markusovszky by Semmelweis after his discovery, in which he explained his friend how he had applied to many obstetrics clinics in Europe to introduce hand washing practice and statistical measurement of the results. In addition to the scientific oeuvre, the scholar’s personality and family relationships also gain a new perspective, and several photographs that have not yet been introduced to the public are presented now. Besides the exhibited art objects, a touchscreen makes it possible to become acquainted with those materials related to Semmelweis which are not available at the exhibition this time.

Visitable: 25 May 2018 – 31 July 2018