Bodysnatchers with Suzie Lennox

Recorded on 24 August 2022

In Georgian Britain the need for cadavers to teach anatomy was reaching its peak and body snatchers were only too willing to meet the demands of anatomists teaching at some of the most eminent anatomy schools and teaching hospitals in Britain.

Drawing on evidence from a diary written by one of the London resurrection men, Suzie Lennox shows how prolific the practice of body snatching became. From gangs in London to the lone individual roaming the streets of Edinburgh, Suzie looks at the rise of body snatching, how the practice spread throughout Britain and the prevention methods that were put in place to try to stop them.


This event was presented in connection with the Library’s exhibition Kill or Cure? A Taste of Medicine – an immersive exhibition examining how Western medicine understood health, disease and treatments from the 15th century to the 19th century.