Notes for 'Severed: a history of heads lost and heads found'

These notes refer to sources listed in the published bibliography.


  1. ‘A frightful skull it is…’, Pearson and Morant, p.25.
  2. ‘it doth trouble me…’, Pearson and Morant, p.40; Fitzgibbons, p.53.
  3. 'the stupendous and inscrutable…’, Pearson and Morant, p.44.
  4. ‘this monstrous head…’, Fitzgibbons, p.57.
  5. ‘the old Villainous Republican…’, Howarth, p.244.
  6. ‘a mere matter of curiosity’, Fitzgibbons, p.73.
  7. ‘fraudulent moonshine’, Pearson and Morant, p.3.
  8. ‘somewhat repulsive’, Donovan, p.370.

Introduction: Irresistible Heads

  1. ‘There are around 3,000 skulls…’, Report of the Committee on Sites to the University Hebdomadal Council, 3 March 1939, p. 103, held by Oxford University archives, reference UR 6/PRM/1, file 1.
  2. ‘all ranks and degrees’, ‘pickpocket and peer…’, Gatrell, 1994, p.62.
  3. ‘Almost every particle…’, Lieberman, 2011, p.8.
  4. ‘sets before our eyes…’, Arasse, 1989, p.36.

Chapter 1: Shrunken Heads

  1. ‘gruesome’, ‘exotic’, ‘weird’, White, 2001, p.38. See also Peers, 2009, unpublished report for the Pitt Rivers Museum, ‘Considerations for the display of shrunken heads’.
  2. For ‘the story of a Shuar leader who traded some heads for guns…’, see Steel 1999, p.755.
  3. ‘like an envelope’, the analogy is Anne Christine Taylor’s, from her 1993 article in Man, ‘Remembering to forget’. It is referred to by Laura Peers in her 2009 unpublished report for the Pitt Rivers Museum, ‘Considerations for the display of shrunken heads’.
  4. On taxidermists and fakes, see Harner, 1972, p.225 n.4.; Harner, 2005, p.145; Karsten, 1935, pp.81-2.
  5. ‘In Panama…’, Up de Graff, 1923, p.283.
  6. ‘enforced his threats’, Hooker 1896 (2011), pp. 247-8; see also, Orchiston 1978, pp. 801-3, 808.
  7. ‘Baked Heads’, Robley, 1896, pp.167-71.
  8. ‘elegance and justness’, ‘resembling something of…’, quoted in Donne, 1975, p.5.
  9. ‘there is strong reason to believe…’, quoted in Robley, 1896, pp.179-80.
  10. ‘considerably reduced the population…’, Robley, 1896, p.169.
  11. ‘should, if possible…’, Beddoe, 1874, p.4.
  12. ‘after a battle, or other slaughter…’, Barnard Davis, 1874, p.142.
  13. ‘The general traveller may also…’, Garson and Read, 1892, p.5.
  14. ‘Three heads from Tangalung…’, see the Oxford University Gazette: vol. XX, no. 677, 13 May 1890, p. 397; vol. XXIV (supplement), no. 806, 12 June 1894, p. 575; vol. XVI, no. 558, 22 June 1886, p. 635.
  15. Accessions to Cambridge University, see the Cambridge University Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology online catalogue, Artefact accession numbers: Z6854, E 1893.149, Z 11206, Z 11207, Z 11208 1916.20, Z 7086, 1886.66.
  16. ‘more than 100,000 human remains…’ see Liz White, 2011, p.133; and The Report of the Working Group on Human Remains, The Department for Culture, Media and Sport, London, 2003, p.385.
  17. ‘an Arab’, 'Mr. Bonny and the cannibal story', The Times, 14 November 1890, p.10.
  18. ‘the most horrible scene…’ 'Mr. Jameson's own story', The Times, 15 November 1890, p.11.
  19. ‘Truly the ways of travellers…’, Percy White, 'Letter to the Editor of The Times', The Times, 19 November 1890, p.4.
  20. ‘Life is very cheap in central Africa…’, ‘ardent naturalist’, 'Mr. Bonny and the cannibal story', The Times, 14 November 1890, p.10.
  21. ‘cast up their eyes in holy horror’, C. G., 'Letter to the Editor of The Times', The Times, 19 November 1890, p.4.
  22. ‘Male and female Australian cannibals…’, quoted in Corbey, 1993, pp. 347-8.
  23. ‘really has eaten other people…’, quoted in Corbey, 1993, p.353.
  24. ‘horde of fiends…’, Up de Graff, 1923, p.274.
  25. ‘the author actually took part…’, Advertisement for Herbert Jenkins Limited, The Times Literary Supplement, 9 November 1922, p.721
  26. ‘Stuffed Human Heads from New Guinea’, Haddon, in Man, vol. 23, 1923, pp.36-9.
  27. ‘very anxious to obtain…’, Haddon, 1901, p.337.
  28. ‘Me fellow friend belong you fellow…’, Haddon, 1901, pp.92-3.
  29. ‘This head cooking was the most disgusting…’, quoted in Pringle, 1970, p.106.
  30. ‘if this could not be done, to execute them…’, ‘how to combine judicious repression’, ‘Snick! Snick!’, Hose, 1994 (1927), pp.102-4.
  31. Duckworth Collection, see Okumura and Siew, 2011, pp.687.
  32. ‘number one exhibit’, ‘brutal’, quoted in Ffrench, 2007.
  33. ‘…a wonderfully inspiring and Holy place…’, quoted in Coughlan, 2007.
  34. Shuar visitors to American Museum of Natural History, see Rubenstein, 2004.
  35. ‘it is by conjuring…’, Giles, 2009, p.90.
  36. ‘When an oil company, drilling for natural gas…’, Forth, 2009, pp.3-4.
  37. ‘In the 1890s, stories spread around Sarawak…’, Drake, 1989, p.271.
  38. ‘…at the sound of a car…’, Forth, 1991, p.261.
  39. ‘One priest working in Flores in the 1960s…’, Erb, 1991, p.117.
  40. ‘Today, there are stores on Sumba…’, Hoskins, 2002, pp.797-798, 801.

Chapter 2: Trophy Heads

  1. ‘A Dyak who reached ‘C’ Company…’, Long, 1963, p.490.
  2. ‘As we were trying to get some sense…’, quoted in Ritchie, 1999, p.127.
  3. ‘heads were missing from 60 per cent of Japanese dead…’, ‘a Japanese priest…’, Harrison, 2006, p.828.
  4. ‘stern disciplinary action’, Fussell, 1989, p.117.
  5. ‘two ‘green’ Japanese skulls’, Lindbergh, 1970 p.923.
  6. ‘If the Japs didn’t know before, they know now…’, Morriss, 1996, p.39.
  7. ‘gloated over, compared, and often swapped their prizes…’, Sledge, 2010 (1981), p.119.
  8. ‘materiels censor’, Petty, 2009, p.140.
  9. ‘floating workshop’, Ladd and Weingartner, 2009, pp.121-2.
  10. ‘Jack wanted a Jap skull’, Kahn, 2000, p.68.
  11. ‘…the cooking and scraping of the heads of Japanese…’, Harrison, 2006, p.822; Fussell, 1988, pp.48; Fussell, 1989.
  12. ‘a kid from the 1st Marine Division…’, ‘Well, yes – and no…’, Ladd and Weingartner, 2009, pp. 23.
  13. ‘Like that kid twirling the skull…’, Ladd and Weingartner, 2009, pp. 26.
    54-55. ‘endless refrain that men had to turn into ‘animals’…’, Bourke, 1999, p.25.
  14. ‘get the hell back in…’, Lindbergh, 1970, p.884.
  15. ‘outstripped combat fatalities by as many as 100 to one’, ‘Casualties’, Pacific War Online Encyclopedia,
  16. ‘reek of mass death’, ‘never mind the heat…’, Ladd and Weingartner, 2009, p.24.
  17. ‘fell into the lower hold of a ship…’, Kahn, 2009, p.106.
  18. ‘fierce struggle for survival…’ Sledge, 2010 (1981), p.120.
  19. ‘escape the restraints of moral identity’, Glover, 1999, p.48.
  20. ‘Each time the pitch was true…’, ‘there was nothing malicious…’, Sledge, 2010 (1981), p.122.
  21. ‘mad dogs’, ‘yellow vermin’, ‘living snarling rats’, Weingartner, 1992, p.54.
  22. ‘They hide up in the trees like wildcats…’, Hersey, 1943, p.10, see also Fussell, 1989, p.116 and Weingartner, 2007, p.564.
  23. ‘I wish we were fighting against the Germans…’, quoted in Fussell, 1989, p.116.
  24. ‘could see in the dark…grubs and roots’, Fussell, 1989, p.116.
  25. ‘gamey smell of animals’, Goodfriend, 1943, see also Weingartner, 1992, p.55.
  26. ‘hunting licences’, New York Times, 1 April 1942, p. 8; quoted in Weingartner, 1992, p.55.
  27. On racism and trophy heads, see Harrison, 2006, (including pp.819, 826), and Harrison, 2012. Also Bourke, 1999 (including pp.28-9).
  28. Msiri ,‘I have killed a tiger!...’, Harrison, 2008, p.287.
  29. Bambata, ‘The bottom of the photograph shows…’, Harrison, 2008, p.288.
  30. successful ‘kills’, ‘body counts’, ‘its forehead had been covered in ribbons’, Harrison, 2012, p.168; see also Bourke 1999, pp.221-222.
  31. ‘would get free drugs, free booze…’, Woodley, 1984, p.251, quoted Bourke, 1999, p.28.
  32. ‘kid went crazy’, ‘the kid went wild…’, Morriss, 1996, p.62.
  33. ‘What a sophomore!...’, Morriss, 1996, p.184.
  34. ‘rear-echelon glory hunters’, see Sledge, 2010 (1981), p.131; also Louise Steinman, The Souvenir, 2001, p.63.
  35. ‘infinitely more comfortable with a book…’, Kahn, 2000, p.xvi.
  36. ‘foreboding and mysterious’, ‘high position and prominence…’, Kahn, 2000, pp.81-2.
  37. ‘a clean and isolated place’, Kahn, 2000, p.85.
  38. ‘alongside a jungle stream’, ‘blasted before my eyes’, toying with this…’, Kahn, 2000, pp.81-2.
  39. On reaching out to the dead, see Bourke, 1999, pp.40-1.
  40. ‘I thought how I valued my own hands…’, ‘but somehow a hand…’, ‘twentieth-century savage’, Sledge, 2010 (1981), p.152.
  41. ‘often bring back the thigh bones…’, Lindbergh, 1970, p.906.
  42. ‘tobacco jar’, Harrison, 2006, p.826.
  43. ‘…spray-painted it gold, tied a bandana around it…’, Harrison, 2006, p.828.
  44. ‘…painted entirely in red and silver…’, Bass, 1983, p.803.
  45. ‘…enlarged to hold a light bulb at Halloween…’, Bass, 1983, p.803; Harrison, 2006, p.832, n.9. See also, Sledzik and Ousley, 1991.
  46. ‘flamboyant, happy-go-lucky’, Larson, 2003, p.xiv.
  47. ‘skinned a seven-foot snake…’, Larson, 2003, p.113.
  48. ‘Here I’m known as the local beetle…’, ‘sack full of skulls’, ‘My reputation as such…’, Larson, 2003, p.113.
  49. ‘staggering around like a zombie’, Larson, 2003, p.xiv.
  50. ‘the British command were less enamoured’, Larson, 2003, p.120.
  51. ‘Well, my dad’s a doctor…’, Sledge, 2010 (1981), p.122.
  52. ‘blood, guts, brains, tongues…’, ‘it looked just like you skinned an animal’, ‘What a mess’, Fahey, 2003 (1963), p.231.
  53. ‘I thought of sending Pack his Jap skull’, ‘Do you want a Jap skull?’, quoted in Harrison, 2006, p.823.
  54. ‘Anybody that knew the family or went in [the] house saw it…’, quoted in Harrison, 2006, p.818.
  55. ‘This is a good Jap…’, ‘Picture of the Week’, Life, 22 May 1944, pp. 34–35.
  56. ‘revolting and horrible’, ‘Letters to the Editors’, Life, 12 June 1944, p. 6.
  57. ‘so small a part of the Japanese anatomy’, Weingartner, 1992, p.61.
  58. ‘he tears a page out of the book…’, Weingartner, 1992, p.62.
  59. ‘Even on the face of the American girl…’, Weingartner, 1992, p.63.
  60. ‘grave violation of law and decency’, Weingartner, 1992, p.60.
  61. ‘to prevent such illegal and brutal acts’, Weingartner, 1992, p.59.
  62. ‘The army has gotten the holy jitters…’, quoted in Aldrich, 2005.
  63. ‘authorized transgression’, Bourke, 1999, p.41.
  64. On military training regimes, see, for example, Glover 1999 and Bourke 1999.
  65. ‘You would just, like, if you had fixed bayonets…’, James Adams, quoted in Lane, 1970; see also Bourke, 1999, p.178
  66. ‘the guy who gives you the most trouble in peacetime’, Bourke, 1999, p.114.
  67. On trophy skulls found in the USA today, see Harrison, 2006.

Chapter 3: Deposed Heads

  1. ‘Edmund Burke observed…’, see Edmund Burke, ‘Of the effects of tragedy’, in A Philosophical Inquiry into the Origin of our Ideas of the Sublime and Beautiful…, 1757.
  2. ‘callus disregard for human decency’, Zelizer, 2010, p.282.
  3. ‘because it had attracted a sudden surge of massive traffic…’, Weimann, 2006, p.210.
  4. top ten search terms in the USA, 13 May 2004, accessed 14 Jan 2013
  5. ’64 documented beheadings in Iraq in 2004…’, Harrow, 2011, table 1.
  6. Paul Johnson, see Smith, 2004 and Weimann, 2006, p.110.
  7. Kenneth Bigley, see Walker, 2004.
  8. Dutch website viewing figures, ‘Beheading videos fascinate public’, Washington Times, 18 October 2004.
  9. High school teachers placed on leave, Zelizer, 2010, p.286.
  10. ‘our letters page today…’, Zelizer, 2010, p.288.
  11. On Berg’s death and the news media, see Zelizer, 2010.
  12. Survey of internet users and graphic images, 2004: Fallows and Rainie, 2004.
  13. ‘One day the media was telling us…’, Maloney, 2004, quoted in Zelizer, 2010, 290.
  14. ‘They aren’t showing us everything…’, Rosen, 2004, quoted in Zelizer, 2010, 290.
  15. ‘You almost can’t believe…’, Walker, 2004.
  16. ‘international media event…’, Jones, 2005, p.1.
  17. ‘has maximum visibility, maximum resonance…’, Harrow, 2011, p.21 (see also p.12).
  18. ‘Now I’ll show you how an Italian dies!’, Campbell, 2006, p.609; BBC News, ‘Italian hostage ‘defied killers’’, 15 April 2004.
  19. ‘it’s not so much the punishing of the individual’, quoted in Campbell, 2006, p.609.
  20. ‘The point of terrorism is to strike fear…’, Smith, 2004.
  21. ‘void of accountability’, Zelizer, 2010, p.304.
  22. ‘there might be 5,000 to watch a standard hanging…’, Gatrell, 1994, p.7.
  23. ‘estimated 20,000 watched Rainey Bethea…’, see Dorothy Moses Schultz, Breaking the Brass Ceiling: women police chiefs and their paths to the top, 2004, pp.117-118.
  24. (pp.85-6) ‘particularly hideous’, ‘disgusting’, ‘unruly’, Friedland, 2012, pp.275-7.
  25. ‘We eat, sleep and breathe McVeigh’, Rimer, 2001.
  26. Witnesses at McVeigh’s execution, Wren, 2001; Johnston, 2001; Yardley, 2001.
  27. On the earliest British state-sponsored beheadings, and Llywelyn and Dafydd ap Gruffydd, see Royer 2003: 324-8.
  28. ‘the limbs served as memoria to Wallace’s crimes’, Westerhof, 2007, p.105.
  29. Sir John Segrave, Fisher, 2004.
  30. ‘bound in iron, lest it should fall to pieces…’, Chronicle of Lannercost, quoted in Royer, 2003, p.328.
  31. Keeper of the Heads on London Bridge, see Pierce, 2001, pp.90, 193.
  32. John of Strathbogie, Earl of Atholl, see Westerhof, 2007, p.92.
  33. Kentish rebels, see Thomson, 1827, p.284.
  34. Francis Townley, see Grant, 2014.
  35. Jacobite heads missing from York, see Wilson and Mee, 2005, p.25.
  36. Sir Thomas More and Margaret Roper, see Hulse, 1994, pp.223-5.
  37. Nichols, Naxley, Jones and Green, see Walsham, 2010, p128.
  38. Beheading traditions in European countries, see Dulmen, 1990, p.79; Spierenberg, 1984, p.119.
  39. Executioners attacked by the crowd, see Spierenburg, 1984, p14-15; Dulmen 1990, pp.113-17.
  40. ‘so great a crowd of people…’, Dulmen, 1990, p.114.
  41. ‘therefore did not know which of the two…’, Dulmen, 1990, p.116.
  42. ‘missed the particular joint…’, ‘and was haggling at it…’, Gatrell, 1994, p.50.
  43. ‘the only visible mark…a thin stripe of blood’, Spierenberg, 1984, p.30.
  44. ‘I am feeling so well that I could easily go on…’, Spierenberg, 1984, pp.30-1.
  45. ‘from the first point of contact to the last…’, Friedland, 2012, p.248.
  46. ‘Give me back my wooden gallows…’, Friedland, 2012, p. 247.
  47. ‘was first drawn as a traitor…’, Royer, 2003, p.328.
  48. On shifting sensibilities surrounding executions, see Friedland, 2012; Gatrell 1994.
  49. Felix Platter, see Friedland, 2012, pp.128-32.
  50. ‘Everyone applauded in order to compliment…’, Friedland, 2012, pp.172-3.
  51. ‘The Parisians seemed only like gawkers…’, Friedland, 2012, p.177.
  52. ‘the aspect of a slaughter house’, Gatrell, 1994, p.306.
  53. ‘excited great contempt’, ‘kept her eyes fixed…’, Gatrell, 1994, pp.311-12.
  54. ‘no emotion suitable to the occasion…’, quoted in Gatrell, 1994, p.60.
  55. ‘ashamed and degraded at the brutal curiosity…’, Thackeray, ‘Going to see a Man Hanged’, 1840.
  56. ‘On 31 October 1793…in 1804, twenty-six men…’, Gerould, 1992, p.65.
  57. ‘that the machine would continue to cut off heads…’, quoted in Janes, 2005, p.92.
  58. ‘134 in 1825, 150 in 1826…’, Athanassoglou-Kallmyer, 1992, p.605.
  59. ‘Vive la guillotine! Vive Deibler’, ‘the defender of terrified society’, Kershaw, 1993, p.95.
  60. ‘a tiger would have pitied her’, Naish, 1991, p.178.
  61. ‘Terrible day. The guillotine devoured 54…’, Fife, 2004, p.376.
  62. ‘Here’s the list of winners of the lottery…’, Fife, 2004, p.376.
  63. ‘This is just a joke, isn’t it’, ‘No, Monsieur…’, Naish, 1991, p.178.
  64. ‘Today’s the actual performance…’, quoted in Gerould, 1992, p.31.
  65. ‘the populace is more easily stirred by pity…’, quoted in Gerould, 1992, p.31.

Chapter 4: Framed Heads

  1. ‘ultimate portrait’, ‘to me this sculpture…’, Brown, 2009.
  2. ‘Yes, I have thought about it…’, Wellcome Trust/Chrissie Giles interview.
  3. ‘How often I have been told…’, Kaufman and McNeil, 1989, p.506.
  4. ‘portrait machine’, Arasse, 1989, p.134.
  5. ‘the photographer’, Arasse, 1989, p.140.
  6. On portrait de guillotine, see Arasse, 1989, pp.134-9.
  7. ‘X-rays show that he had painted out the first head…’, Graham-Dixon, 2010, p.185.
  8. ‘born of a wound that does not heal’, Bataille, ‘Sacrificial Mutilation and the Severed Ear of Vincent Van Gogh’, in Visions of Excess, University of Minnesota Press, 1985, p.64.
  9. ‘shut his door to his accustomed life’, Eitner, 1972, p.31.
  10. ‘this human charnel house…’, quoted in Miles, 2007, p.174.
  11. ‘It would be difficult to find a Parisian…’, quoted in Shwartz, 1999, p.46.
  12. On Géricault, the death penalty, and Brascassat; and on the popular business of horror at the time, see Athanassoglou-Kallmyer, 1992.
  13. ‘How beautiful you are!’, ‘did seem beautiful…’, originally recorded by Clement, 1868, p.133; I have quoted the translation in Eitner, 1982, p.183.
  14. ‘I don’t want any part of the Medusa…’, quoted in Athanassoglou-Kallmyer, 1992, p.617.
  15. ‘truly sublime’, ‘the best argument for Beauty…’, quoted in Athanassoglou-Kallmyer, 1992, p.618.
  16. diverses parties du corps humain’, see Eitner, 1982, p.345, n.133.
  17. ‘numerous corpses’, Clement, 1868, pp.131-2.
  18. Colin and Champmartin, see Athanassoglou-Kallmyer, 1992, p.614.
  19. ‘painting it in every aspect…’, quoted in an unsigned article (possibly by P. Burty) in Gazette des Beaux-Arts, vol. 6, 1860, p. 314.
  20. ‘It’s me and a dead head…’, Hirst and Burn, 2001, p.34
  21. ‘abuse of power’, ‘breaches all professional standards…’, quoted in Clark, 2013.
  22. ‘exploitative and insensitive work’, quoted in Clark, 2013.
  23. ‘When I was really young…’, Hirst and Burn, 2001, p.36.
  24. ‘The people aren’t there…’, Hirst and Burn, 2001, p.52.
  25. ‘There has to be a lot going on…’, quoted in Bruell, 2012.
  26. ‘You spend so much time communing…’, quoted in Bruell, 2012.
  27. ‘an empathetic embrace of the subject…’, Cutler-Shaw, 1994, p.29.
  28. ‘in very minute particles’, da Vinci, 1983, p.502.
  29. ‘of living during the night in the company…’, da Vinci, 1983, p.502.
  30. ‘the head, the face, the neck, are far too human’, Medical student’s blog at which-i-became-scarred-for-life-tales-from-the-anatomy-lab/
  31. ‘ignoring hands and faces’, Shapiro et. al., 2006, pp.12, 15.
  32. ‘I painted her face disappearing…’, quoted in Younie, 2013, p.93.
  33. ‘I was more inclined to think of the patients as people…’, quoted in Younie, 2013, p.90.
  34. ‘realized you can depict both…’, quoted in Younie, 2013, p.92.
  35. ‘They were of dissected models…’, Joyce Cutler-Shaw, personal correspondence with the author.
  36. ‘under the influence of the most painful emotions’, Tussaud, 1839, p.199.
  37. ‘They are good likenesses, they are well done.’, Dele´cluze, 1855, p.172.
  38. ‘the most correct appearance of Animation’, quoted in Pilbeam, 2003, p.79.
  39. for Tussaud and Despard, and the Tussaud exhibition, see Pilbeam, 2003, pp.69, 108, also pp.42, 67-8.
  40. ‘make art that was more real’, see ‘Transcript of interviews: Damien Hirst 360 private view’, Channel 4, 2012, at
  41. ‘I also think that the total self-portrait-ness…’, quoted in Frank, 2012.

Chapter 5: Potent Heads

  1. National Museum of Ireland examines Plunkett’s head, see Donnelly, 1996-97.
  2. ‘Even Catholic historians agree…’, see Kilfeather, 2002, p.233.
  3. ‘Sentence of death was passed against me…’, O´ Fiaich 1975: 94
  4. ‘as unconcerned as if he had been going to a wedding’, O´ Fiaich 1975: 104
  5. Saint Edmund, see Bynum, 1995, pp.206-8.
  6. Brian Boru, see Faulkner, 2012, p.46.
  7. ‘favours received through the intercession…’, Stokes, 1954, p.86; Matthews 1961, p.124.
  8. ‘lovely’, ‘generations of civilized living and culture…’, Curtayne, 1953, quoted in Tarlow, 2013, p.72.
  9. ‘a national centre of devotion…’, O´ Fiaich, 1975, p.116.
  10. The annual festival…has become more elaborate, see Parsons, 2004, p.883.
  11. ‘more than 120 known cases’, see Montgomery, 1997, p.53. N.B. erratum: in the hardback edition this is mistakenly stated as ‘150 known cases’.
  12. ‘Everything shone and dazzled…’, ‘looking rather disgusted’, Hulse, 1994, pp.203-4.
  13. ‘a specific medicine in the cure of…’, Jean de Renou, quoted in Arnold, 2006, p.147.
  14. ‘vital spirits’, ‘burst forth’, quoted in Gordon-Grube, 1993, p.196.
  15. Johann Schroeder, see Gordon-Grube, 1993, pp.195-6.
  16. ‘epileptics standing around the scaffold…’, quoted in Noble, 2003, p.685; Gordon-Grube, 1988, p.407; Peacock, 1896, p.270.
  17. ‘sympathetic action’, Arnold, 2006, p.147.
  18. ‘the bite of a mad dog’, Peacock, 1896, p.277; see also Gordon-Grube, 1993, p.192.
  19. medicinal use of traitors’ heads on London Bridge, see Pearce, 2001, p.155.
  20. ‘disorders of the head’, Modenesi, 2009, 147.
  21. ‘In 1694 it was reported…’, Wootton, Chronicles of Pharmacy, volume 2, 1910, p.6; see also Gordon-Grube, 1988, p.408 n.4.
  22. ‘The moss in the skull of a dead man...’, quoted in Gordon-Grube, 1993, p.194.
  23. Francis Bacon, see Noble, 2003, p.704, n.32.
  24. ‘For I take a man’s skull…’, quoted in Gordon-Grube, 1993, p.199.
  25. ‘in the early 1900s priced at 17 marks…’, Gordon-Grube, 1993, p.215, n.59; see also Noble, 2003, p.686.
  26. ‘flesh-eating’, Aries, 2008 (1981), pp.56-8.
  27. Fears surrounding limber corpses, see Richardson, 1988, pp.13-17; see also Bynum, 1995, p.205 on fears surrounding cutting up saintly bodies.
  28. ‘pricked upon a pole’, ‘grew daily fresher…’, Hall, 1655, pp.211-12.
  29. ‘quite quirky’, ‘pretty awesome’,
  30. ‘a Communist party member warned…’, Verdery,1999, pp.45-6.
  31. On Mozart’s skull, see Davies, 1989, p.171.
  32. On Beethoven’s and Schubert’s skulls, see Dickey, 2009, p.148-57.
  33. ‘To be gnawed out of our graves…’, Dickey, 2009, p.16.
  34. ‘the presence in a museum of such a relic…’, Williams, 1894, p.269.

Chapter 6: Bone Heads

  1. For Rosenbaum and Haydn, see Dickey, 2009.
  2. ‘The sight made a life-long impression on me…’, quoted in Dickey, 2009, p. 74.
  3. On Gall’s lectures, see van Wyhe, 2002, pp.26-9. 34.
  4. ‘craniological mania’, ‘spread like a plague…’, Cooter, 1984, p.135.
  5. ‘not be struck with the number of situations…’, Cooter, 1984, p.136.
  6. ‘Phrenological studies or as family memorials’, De Ville, 1824, p.115.
  7. On sales of Combe, Darwin,, see Cooter, 1984, p.120.
  8. ‘The law student, after having exhausted…’, quoted in van Wyhe, 2004, p.59.
  9. ‘no unusual thing to hear the mechanic…’, quoted in Cooter, 1984, p.137.
  10. On Michael Denis, see van Wyhe, 2004, p.16.
  11. ‘they looked all so white, and so exactly alike’, ‘and they came in troops to see them’, Gibbon, 1878, p.95.
  12. ‘source of all the feelings, ideas…’, quoted in Bound Alberti, 2012, p.143.
  13. On phrenology and the rising professional classes, see Cooter, 1984, e.g. pp.70-72.
  14. ‘cornerstone’, Meigs, 1858, pp.2-3.
  15. ‘the best’, Hodgkin, 1848, p.31.
  16. ‘fanciful causes’, Knox 1850, p.591, quoted in Stocking, 1987, p.65.
  17. ‘science of man’, see, for example, see Hunt, 1863, p.6.
  18. ‘The human skull stands immensely pre-eminent…’, Barnard Davis, 1865, p.3.
  19. ‘easily prepared and preserved…’, Meigs, 1858, pp.2-3. See also Jorion, 1982.
  20. On Blumenbach’s collection, see Antonie Luyendijk-Elshout, ‘The magic of the skull. ‘Commercium craniorum’ in the nineteenth century’, International Journal of Osteoarchaeology, vol.7, 1997, p.572.
  21. On Army Medical Museum collection, see Meigs, 1858, p.4.
  22. On the Phrenological Sociey of Edinburgh collection, see Harrison, 2012, p.53.
  23. On James de Ville’s collection, see Meigs, 1858, p.4.
  24. On Gall’s collection, see Ackerknecht and Vallois, 1956, p.38.
  25. On John Hunter’s collection, see Moore, 2005, pp. 120, 473-474.
  26. ‘seen from above and from behind…’, Blumenbach, 1878, pp.236-7.
  27. ‘every case on the wagon…’, Keckeisen, 2012, p.12.
  28. ‘130 skeletons, 2,000 dried preparations…’, Dias, 2012, p.332.
  29. ‘Friends (and enemies)…’, Gould, 1981, p.83.
  30. ‘Imagine a series of 600 skulls…’, quoted in Gould, 1981, p.82.
  31. ‘He had never seen a Phoenician skull…’, Barnard Davis, 1865, pp.4-5.
  32. ‘it was most desirable that such a collection…’, ‘the richest and most valuable ever formed…’, ‘The Barnard Davis collection of skulls’, British Medical Journal, vol. 2, no. 990, 1879, p. 996.
  33. ‘I feel a good deal dismantled…’, Letters between Barnard Davis and Sir William Flowers, the curator at the Royal College of Surgeons, Royal College of Surgeons archives, RCS_MUS//2/4/92, Museum Letter Book, Series 2, Volume 4,
  34. ‘looked on heads simply as potential skulls’, ‘Now, you know that man can’t recover…’, ‘carried his head on his own shoulders…’, Beddoe, 1910, p. 205, quoted in Jorion, 1982, p.9.
  35. ‘a most winning gentleness of manner…’, quoted in Fabian, 2010, p.21.
  36. ‘138 people contributed skulls’, Fabian, 2010, p.36.
  37. ‘a general order to procure bleached skulls…’, ‘gruesome gift’, Apter, 1999, p.592.
  38. ‘rather a perilous business to procure…’, Fabian, 2010, p.64.
  39. ‘a sort of rascally pleasure…’, Fabian, 2010, p.105.
  40. On A.C. Haddon in Ireland in the 1890s, see Quiggin, 1942, pp.70-71.
  41. ‘discreetly loosening from the ground skulls…’, The Seligmans’ experiences are recorded by Brenda Seligman in her field diary for 18 and 19 March 1912, kept in the archives at the London School of Economics, Seligman collection, file 1/4/5.
  42. For the skulls in Joseph Barnard Davis’ collection, see ‘Catalogue of Human Crania &c in the Collection of Joseph Barnard Davis’, manuscript catalogue, Royal College of Surgeons archives, MS0283/1, The Joseph Barnard Davis Papers.
  43. Morton relied on US Army officers, see Juzda, 2009, p.158.
  44. ‘aid in the progress of anthropological science…’, quoted in Juzda, 2009, p.156.
  45. ‘approximately 3,000 skulls by 1900…’, see Juzda, 2009, p.157 and p.160.
  46. ‘boiling heads in the camp kitchen’, see Juzda, 2009, p.162.
  47. ‘removing the heads of recently killed members of the Modoc tribe’, Harrison, 2012, p.91.
  48. On the history of autopsy and post mortem, see Crossland, 2009.
  49. On Morton’s beliefs regarding race, see Fabian, 2010, p.30.
  50. ‘…science can go to hell…’, ‘Besides, I cannot believe…’, Heizer and Kroeber, 1979, p. 240. Also quoted in Crossland, 2009, p.116.
  51. ‘a compromise between science and sentiment’, Heizer and Kroeber, 1979, p. 240. Also quoted in Crossland, 2009, p.116.
  52. ‘When I first commenced it…’, Barnard Davis, 1867, p. vi.
  53. ‘strong points were untiring energy….’, ‘Joseph Barnard Davis, M.D., F.R.S., Hanley’, British Medical Journal, vol. 1, no. 1066, 1881, p. 901.
  54. ‘more than 600 different instruments for measuring skulls’, Hoyme, 1953, p.410.
  55. ‘Morton chose to use a facial goniometer…’, see Hoyme, 1953, p.416.
  56. ‘One curator at the Army Medical Museum…’, the curator was Washington Matthews, see Juzda, 2009, p.164.
  57. ‘the essential and irreconcilable diversity of human races’, Joseph Barnard Davis, ‘Oceanic races, their hair, etc., and the value of skulls in the classification of man’, Anthropological Review, Vol. 8., No. 29, 1870, p187.
  58. ‘Morton eventually considered abandoning fertility…’, see Fabian, 2010, p.31.
  59. ‘at a loss’ quoted in Meigs, 1856, p.7.
  60. ‘not to calculate the average skull size for the Caucasians’, Morton, 1849, pp.ix-x. For a full analysis of Morton’s calculations, see Gould, 1981.
  61. ‘sometimes had the skulls of both Europeans…’, Morton, 1849, p.iv.
  62. On Paul Broca’s Parisian skull study, see Dias, 2012, p.345.
  63. ‘every mode of investigation and representation…’, Barnard Davis, 1867, pp.viii-ix.
  64. ‘thousands of corrections’, Barnard Davis, 1867, p.xvi.
  65. ‘more or less inaccurate’, quoted in Juzda, 2009, p.164.
  66. On Ales? Hrdlic?ka, see Stojanowski and Euber, 2011, p.144.
  67. On William Howells, see The William W. Howells Craniometric Data Set at; and Friedlaender, 2007, pp.12-13.
  68. The Open Research Scan Archive website is at
  69. ‘poor accuracy for predicting the ancestry of a skull’, see Marina Elliott and Mark Collard, ‘FORDISC and the determination of ancestry from cranial measurements’, Biology Letters, Vol. 5, No. 6, 2009; Elliott and Collard, ‘Going head to head’, 2012; and Kallenberger and Pilbrow, 2012.
  70. ‘William Howells might not have been surprised…’, see Friedlaender, 2007, pp.13-14.
  71. ‘A recent comparison of Hrdlic?ka’s measurements with those of Howells…’, Stojanowski and Euber, 2011.
  72. ‘roughly 90 percent of global craniometric variation…’, Kallenberger and Pilbrow, 2012, p.463.
  73. ‘The head of a king from Ghana….’, Popham, 2009.
  74. ‘Twenty people’s skulls were sent back to Namibia…’, Grieshaber, 2011.
  75. ‘The Smithsonian returned Ishi’s brain…’, Speaker, 2003;
  76. ‘the heads and skulls of criminals in the Lombroso Museum…’, ‘Homes for Bones’, Nature editorial, 25 September 2013;
  77. ‘Since 2003, more than 70 toi moko have been returned…’, us/ Repatriation/toimoko.

Chapter 7: Dissected Heads

  1. For Hayes and the hemihead, see Hayes, 2009, pp.52-55.
  2. ‘shrugging off what you are seeing’, ‘desensitizing’, ‘distancing yourself…’, Lempp, 2005, p.322.
  3. ‘When you cut a cadaver’s head in half…’, Lempp, 2005, p.322.
  4. ‘stop yourself thinking about’, Lempp, 2005, p.322.
  5. ‘it begins to look like an anatomy book…’, O'Carroll, 2002, p.551.
  6. ‘the most alarming moments…’, Montross, 2007, p.13.
  7. ‘Today, watching my classmates switch…’, Medical student’s blog at
  8. ‘brutal’, ‘attacking it’, ‘horrible’, ‘disturbing’, ‘traumatic’, ‘violating normal rules’, Martyn et. al., 2012, p.409.
  9. ‘…you realize that words fail to capture…’, Medical student’s blog at
  10. ‘It is just one hour after morning coffee…’, Hayes, 2009, p.95.
  11. ‘the cadaver never complained…’, Segal, 1988, p.21.
  12. ‘It doesn’t feel right to cut her up without…’, Montross, 2007, p.39.
  13. ‘Holding the cadaver’s chin does little…’, Montross, 2007, p.64.
  14. ‘I remained standing over the orifice…’, Gross, 2012, p.1175.
  15. ‘I knew how the brain looked…’, Gross, 2012, p.1176.
  16. ‘operable body’, Gross, 2012, p.1177; see also Hirschauer, 1991.
  17. George Combe dissecting brother, Stack, 2008, p.3.
  18. William Harvey dissecting father and sister, Payne, 2002, p.45.
  19. ‘In 2010, a doctor in Karnataka…’, Beary, 2010.
  20. ‘hacked his mother to pieces’, Hafferty, 1988, p.348.
  21. ‘a group of students at a university in Paris…’, Leboulanger, 2011.
  22. ‘Many chose to go to particular medical schools…’, Quince et. al., 2011, p.201.
  23. ‘We worried there was something defective about us…’, quoted in Fitzharris, 2013, p.109.
  24. ‘The terrible thing is that…’, Collins, 1994, p.328.
  25. ‘The fear comes from the fact that he is in a room…’, Montross, 2007, p.262.
  26. For Montross dissected Eve’s head see Montross, 2007, pp. 277-286.
  27. ‘I feel ashamed, because I understand…’, Montross, 2007, p.284.
  28. ‘You’d be awed by what simply surrounds the eye…’, Medical student’s blog at
  29. On the process of objectification during human dissection, see Segal, 1988, p.22.
  30. ‘Before the Second World War…’, see Richardson and Hurwitz, 1995, p. 277; Richardson, 1988, p.260.
  31. ‘a dirty source of knowledge’, Richardson, 1988, p.95.
  32. ‘the mass of offal, and the putrid vapours…’, quoted in Alberti, 2011, pp.123-5.
  33. ‘workshop of filthy creation’, Shelley, 1992 (1818), p.53.
  34. ‘doctors went to considerable lengths to ensure…’, Richardson 1988, pp. 95, 128, 145, and 185-6.
  35. ‘a fate worse than death’, Richardson, 1988, p.32.
  36. ‘drinking smoking and brawling…’, ‘repulsive objects’, quoted in MacDonald, Human Remains, 2005, pp.30-33.
  37. 'splendid', 'fine', 'superb', Dias, 2012, p.347.
  38. ‘perfect snowy-white, teeth complete…’, quoted in Keckeisen, 2012, pp.11-12.
  39. ‘Andreas Vesalius had advised…’, ‘fine, white, ivory complexion’, see Alberti, 2011, p.111.
  40. ‘suction mouths’, ‘these industrious operatives’, Fabian, 2010, p.19.
  41. ‘those operations which seem barbarous to their eyes…’, Fabian, 2010, p.34; Jorion, 1982, p.9.
  42. ‘Notes on the preparation of Crania…’, ‘soft parts from the head…’, ‘diminish the intolerable fetor’, ‘beauty and whiteness’, quoted in MacDonald, Human Remains, 2005, pp.107-8.
  43. ‘One scrapes bones, puts them in to soak…’, quoted in Dias, 2012, p.330.
  44. ‘most abominable stench’, Bieder, 1992, p.26.
  45. ‘One tubercular Scottish doctor…’, Harvey, 1939, pp.164-5.
  46. On Rosenbaum and Elizabeth Roose, see Dickey, 2009, pp.59-65.
  47. ‘Were I myself in the colony…’, ‘Difficulties always stand in the way…’, quoted in MacDonald, Reading the ‘foreign skull’, 2005, p.83.
  48. For Crowther and William Lanney’s body, see MacDonald, Reading the ‘foreign skull’, 2005, and MacDonald, 2004.
  49. ‘murderers, or something worse’, quoted in MacDonald, 2004, p.51.
  50. On the fate of Lanney’s body parts, see Ryan, 1981, p.217.
  51. ‘steps ... in the interests of science’, quoted in MacDonald, 2004, p.51-52.
  52. ‘crafted material’, Alberti, ‘Anatomical Craft’, forthcoming.
  53. Thomas Pole used dried peas, see Hallam, 2010, p.482.
  54. On anatomical preparations, see Alberti, 2011, 109-111; Hallam, 2010, p.482.
  55. ‘acquire a disagreeable blackness’, ‘one of the greatest ornaments…’, Hallam, 2010, p.482.
  56. On Joseph Swan, and ‘the most elegant of all…’, Alberti, 2011, pp.110-11.
  57. ‘the aesthetic pose helps to dispel disgust…’, quoted in Linke, 2005, p.17.
  58. ‘disturbing’, ‘in poor taste’, Walter, 2004, p. 621.
  59. ‘cottage industry’, Gould, 1981, p.124.
  60. ‘were required to write a short essay’, Hecht, 2003, pp.10-11.
  61. ‘a remarkable thing’, ‘exquisite delicacy…’, Hecht, 2003, p.25.
  62. ‘jars labeled ‘intellectuals’’, Hecht, 2003, p.39.
  63. ‘They see a lot of action in the elementary schools...’, ‘Is there something else or not?’, quoted in Edidin, 2005.
  64. ‘Despite all the we intuitively understand…’, Wingate, 2011, p.22.
  65. On the New York Brain Bank at Columbia University, see Vonsattel et al., 2008.
  66. ‘to facilitate the discharge of all the blood…’, MacDonald, Human Remains, 2005, p.108.
  67. ‘The brain in a vat is an emblem of our technocracy…’, Gere, 2004, p.220.

Chapter 8: Living Heads

  1. ‘William and Mary’, Dahl, 1962.
  2. ‘On the first application of the process to the face…’, quoted in Morus, 1998, p.127.
  3. ‘every muscle in his countenance…’, quoted in Morus, 1998, p.129.
  4. ‘connecting two severed heads together…’, Sleigh, 1998, p.229.
  5. ‘the use of decapitated human heads in experimentation was made illegal’, Finger and Law, 1998, p.163.
  6. On Wendt’s experiments, see Kervorkian, 1985, p.220.
  7. ‘I think, but I am not’, Arasse, 1989, p.39.
  8. ‘Who did not see Charlotte Corday’s face blush…’, quoted in Jordanova, 1989, p.40.
  9. ‘The eyelids promptly closed of their own accord…’, quoted in Gerould, 1992, p.54.
  10. ‘every time they sank a scalpel into the soft tissues…’, Kervorkian, 1985, p.220.
  11. ‘Do you hear me?’, Kervorkian, 1985, p.221.
  12. Georges Martin, see Roach, 2003, p. 201.
  13. Pierre-Francois Lacenaire, see Gerould, 1992, p.55.
  14. Jean Baptiste Vincent Laborde, see Roach, 2003, p.202-5.
  15. Dassy de Lignières, see Gerould, 1992, p.55; Kershaw 1993, p.85.
  16. ‘the whole face wakened…’, ‘I affirm…’, Kershaw 1993, p.85.
  17. ‘When the knife has done its work…’, Gerould, 1992, p.56.
  18. Soemmerring, Sue and Oelsner, see Jordanova, 1989; Arasse, 1989.
  19. ‘feeling, personality, and sense of self remain…’, Arasse, 1989, p.39.
  20. ‘thick and round’, Arasse, 1989, p.40.
  21. ‘What could be more horrible than the perception…’, Arasse, 1989, p.44.
  22. Sue thought that there were three ‘life forces’, Jordanova, 1989, p.46.
  23. George Cabanis, see Jordanova, 1989, p.46-47; Arasse, 1989, p.42.
  24. ‘rabble of cannibals’, Jordanova, 1989, p.44.
  25. ‘when a pregnant sheep was decapitated…’, Miller and Truog, 2010; Lizza 2011.
  26. ‘experiments on pigs’, Michael Marshall, ‘Death rattle of a decapitated brain’, New Scientist, 9 February 2011.
  27. ‘The cruelest of executioners who burns…’, quoted in Gerould, 1992, p.56.
  28. ‘Every vital element survives decapitation…’, Doctors Piedelièvre and Fournier, ‘Report to the Academy of Medicine’, quoted in Albert Camus (trans. Justin O'Brien), Resistance, Rebellion and Death, New York, the Modern Library, 1963, p138.
  29. ‘a vigorously decisive man…’, ‘Russian scientists create two-headed dog’, Life magazine, 20 July 1959, pp. 79–80.
  30. On Demikov and White, see Roach, 2003, pp.206-13; and Bennun, 2000.
  31. ‘dangerous, pugnacious…’, Bennun, 2000.
  32. ‘not only does the mind contain all those elements…’, Bennun, 2000.
  33. ‘I have always come back to the same basic concept…’, Bennun, 2000.
  34. ‘I really haven’t thought those out…’, Bennun, 2000.
  35. On the science of cryopreservation, see Pringle, 2001, pp.334-335; Parry 2004.
  36. ‘There is no such thing as a “brain transplant”…’, Bridge, 1995.
  37. ‘cut to the core…’, Darwin, 1988.
  38. ‘Alcor and I started down…’, Darwin, 1988.
  39. ‘start talking with your family and friends about cryonics…’, Bridge, 1995.
  40. On the cryopreservation procedure, see Pringle, 2001, pp.336-7; and Alcor Procedures,
  41. On the damage incurred by cryopreservation, see Parry, 2004, pp.407-408.
  42. ‘a patchwork of grafts, implants and tiny motors’, Robert Ettinger, quoted in Parry, 2004, p. 405.
  43. On exercise and the brain, see Dregan and Guilliford, 2013.
  44. On ‘the Knowledge’ and London cab drivers, see Woollett and Maguire, 2011, and Young, 2011.
  45. On piano tuners, see Teki et al., 2012.
  46. ‘became so incensed that somebody else’s leg…’, Shreeve, 1995.
  47. ‘A study of 35 male heart recipients in Israel…’, Poole et al., 2009, pp.34-35.
  48. ‘A similar study in Vienna showed that 20 per cent…’, Bunzel, 1992.
  49. ‘…had developed a great love of classical music…’, Sandeep Joshi, ‘Memory transference in organ transplant recipients’, NAMAH, 2011,
  50. ‘…she inexplicably craved beer and chicken nuggets…’, Joshi, 2011, ibid.
  51. ‘…the heart’s ‘little brain’…’, Bound Alberti, 2010, pp.39-40.
  52. ‘The gut has an even more extensive ‘little brain’…’, Mosley, 2012.
  53. ‘As many as two thirds of heart-transplant recipients feel distressed…’, Poole et al., 2009, pp.34.
  54. ‘…attempted to cut themselves open…’, Poole et al, 2009, pp.33.
  55. ‘the heart is rejecting me’, Bunzel et al., 1992, p.252.
  56. ‘We are okay.’, Bunzel et al., 1992, p.254.
  57. ‘organ of expressivity’, Agich, 2011, p.133.
  58. ‘Our sense of ourselves as fully human…’, Perpich, 2010, p.184.

Conclusion: Other People’s Heads

  1. ‘That is not me. Something happened to me.’, quoted in Glover, 1999, p.61.
  2. ‘I just started killing any kinda way I could kill…’, quoted in Glover, 1999, p.62.
  3. ‘necessary inhumanity’, this common phrase was originally used by the eighteenth century surgeon, John Hunter.
  4. ‘distant and uncomprehending lay culture’, Hafferty, 1988, p.374.
  5. ‘sweet fragrance’, Tarlow, 2013, p.72.