Gustavianum

The Anatomical Theatre

Olof Rudbeck the elder allowed for the dome to be built on the roof of the Gustavianum1662-1663. He had received the idea from the Anatomical Theatre in Leiden, Holland, which he had visited himself.

The Anatomical Theatre was supposed to be used as a classroom for teaching Medicine. Up until 1766 dissections were carried out in front of medical students and a paying public on criminals who had been executed.

The Anatomical TheatreDuring the last part of the 18th century and onwards the Anatomical Theatre was used by the University Library. Around the middle of the 19th century the interior was demolished and the upper section functioned as a zoological museum. In the 1950s the theatre was restored to its former state.

The premises fascinate a lot of people with its fantastic natural lighting, which creates a very special atmosphere. The dome is swathed in copper plating on the outside and has been crowned with a small globe, which also functions as a sundial.

There is a similar Anatomical Theatre in Padua and one in Bologna in Italy.