An Interactive Annotated World Bibliography of Printed and Digital Works in the History of Medicine and the Life Sciences from Circa 2000 BCE to 2022 by Fielding H. Garrison (1870-1935), Leslie T. Morton (1907-2004), and Jeremy M. Norman (1945- ) Traditionally Known as “Garrison-Morton”

15791 entries, 13704 authors and 1919 subjects. Updated: September 13, 2022

COWPER, William

5 entries
  • 385.1

The anatomy of humane bodies, with figures drawn after the life by some of the best masters in Europe.

Oxford: Sam. Smith, 1698.

The largest in format, and most elaborate and beautiful of all 17th century English treatises on anatomy, and also one of the most extraordinary plagiarisms in the entire history of medicine. Cowper purchased sets of the van Gunst copperplates used to illustrate Bidloo’s book from Bidloo's publisher apparently without Bidloo's permission, and issued them under his own name with an improved text in English, and a new illustrated appendix. For the frontispiece Cowper had a small printed flap with his own name pasted over Bidloo’s own engraved title and name. All of this was apparently done without Bidloo's permission, so even though Cowper credited Bidloo with the plates, Bidloo accused Cowper of plagiarism and published the record of the case in the following polemic: Gulielmus Cowper, criminis literarii citatus, coram tribunali nobiliss., ampliss: Societatis Britanno-Regiae, Leiden, 1700.



Subjects: ANATOMY › 17th Century, ANATOMY › Anatomical Illustration, ART & Medicine & Biology
  • 1214

An account of two new glands and their excretory ducts, lately discovered in human bodies.

Phil. Trans., 1700, 21, 364-69, 1699.

Cowper’s description of the glands which bear his name. He was forestalled in their discovery by Jean Méry.



Subjects: ANATOMY › 17th Century, Genito-Urinary System
  • 2730

Of ossifications or petrifications in the coats of arteries, particularly in the valves of the great artery.

Phil. Trans., 24, 1970-77, 1706.

First description of aortic insufficiency. Reproduced in Willius & Keys: Cardiac classics, 1941, pp. 109-14.



Subjects: CARDIOLOGY › CARDIOVASCULAR DISEASE › Aortic Diseases
  • 3670.1

Anthropologia nova; or, a new system of anatomy. Describing the animal oeconomy, and a short rationale of many distempers incident to human bodies.

London: Sam. Smith & Benj. Walford, 1707.

In his preface Drake credited the surgeon, anatomist and artist, William Cowper, for valuable aid in both the text and illustrations this work. Drake also included a chapter, "Of the Nose" written by Cowper which described the operation Cowper pioneered to empty the surgical treatment of diseases of the maxillary sinus. “In order to empty Highmore’s antrum of deposits and to be able to carry out the necessary irrigations, he extracted in most cases the first permanent molar, and then penetrated through its aveolus into the sinus with a pointed instrument” (Guerini).



Subjects: DENTISTRY, OTORHINOLARYNGOLOGY (Ear, Nose, Throat) › Rhinology
  • 392.1

Myotomia reformata.

London: Robert Knaplock, 1724.

This work made a modest first appearance in 1694 as an octavo, but Cowper worked until his death on a new edition which was finally published posthumously under the supervision and at the expense of Richard Mead (1673-1754). This sumptuous folio with engravings after Rubens and Raphael and an ingenious set of historiated initials, ranks among the most artistic anatomical atlases of the period.



Subjects: ANATOMY › 18th Century, ANATOMY › Anatomical Illustration, ANATOMY › Anatomy for Artists, ART & Medicine & Biology