Portraits of "problem girls— - inhabitants of Bedlam

Portraits of "problem girls— - inhabitants of Bedlam

Categories: Health and Medicine | History

The creepy old pictures depict women who turned out to be patients of the infamous Bethlem Royal Hospital. This institution received the "popular" name of Bedlam, which eventually became a household name. They tried to cure patients here by rotating on chairs in front of visitors who paid for the spectacle.

Most of the patients in the London hospital were diagnosed with acute mania, and some got here after the murder. The famous institution, which became the first in Europe to specialize in the treatment of mental patients, and formed the basis of the plot of the 1946 film "Bedlam", was founded in 1247 during the reign of Henry III.

(22 photos in total)

Portraits of "problem girls— - inhabitants of Bedlam Source: Daily Mail

Portraits of "problem girls— - inhabitants of Bedlam

An unnamed patient who was diagnosed with acute mania.

One of the know-how of the institution was the use of the method of treatment of Erasmus Darwin, grandfather of Charles Darwin - rotational therapy, during which the patient was placed on a chair suspended in the air, which was rotated around the axis for several hours.

Portraits of "problem girls— - inhabitants of Bedlam

Sarah Gardner, a maidservant, fell into Bedlam in 1857, when she was 26 years old, diagnosed with severe depression.

In the XVIII and XIX centuries, patients were kept in cold baths, starved and beaten. During this cruel period, the Quaker philanthropist Edward Wakefield visited Bedlam in 1814 and described seeing naked, chained to the walls and starved patients there.

Portraits of "problem girls— - inhabitants of Bedlam

Harriet Jordan is one of many patients admitted to the hospital in 1858. She was also diagnosed with acute mania.

A distinctive feature of Bedlam was its accessibility to the general public, since rich patrons could pay money to stare at the unfortunate imprisoned in a mental hospital. The hospital has moved several times. In those days, women were easily recognized as insane and taken to a psychiatric hospital, where they were abandoned.

Portraits of "problem girls— - inhabitants of Bedlam

Fanny Barrett fell into Bedlam in 1858, and was diagnosed with intermittent mania.

Usually women were imprisoned in a madhouse for various diseases and symptoms that are not considered manifestations of insanity today. Often these poor people suffered from postpartum depression, alcoholism or senile dementia, or committed a public offense — for example, they cheated on their husband — and for this they were fused into Bedlam. At that time, it was believed that women were particularly at risk of mental illness caused by disorders in the reproductive system of the body.

Portraits of "problem girls— - inhabitants of Bedlam

An unnamed patient of Bedlam.

Women who occupied a lower position in society and had less power and money were more defenseless, so they were sent to a madhouse if they bothered their husband. Photographer Henry Goering photographed Bedlam patients between 1846 and 1858 to examine their faces for signs of mental illness.

Portraits of "problem girls— - inhabitants of Bedlam

Another unfortunate woman who turned out to be a guinea pig of psychiatrists of a cruel era.

Portraits of "problem girls— - inhabitants of Bedlam

A photograph of Bethlem Royal Hospital taken in 1926, when the institution moved to St. George Fields.

Portraits of "problem girls— - inhabitants of Bedlam

Eliza Camplin was admitted to the hospital in 1858 with a diagnosis of acute mania.

Portraits of "problem girls— - inhabitants of Bedlam

The famous artist Richard Dadd got into Bedlam after he killed his own father, mistaking him for the devil.

Portraits of "problem girls— - inhabitants of Bedlam

The main hall of the Anatomical Theater of Bedlam in 1926. Four years later, the hospital will move to its current location in Bromley.

Portraits of "problem girls— - inhabitants of Bedlam

In 1855, Eliza Griffin entered the hospital, where she was later diagnosed with acute mania.

Portraits of "problem girls— - inhabitants of Bedlam

Another unknown patient of the hospital.

Portraits of "problem girls— - inhabitants of Bedlam

Eliza Josolin arrived at the hospital in 1857, where she was later diagnosed with acute melancholy.

Portraits of "problem girls— - inhabitants of Bedlam

An unknown patient of Bedlam.

Portraits of "problem girls— - inhabitants of Bedlam

William Thomas Green fell into Bedlam with acute mania in 1857.

Portraits of "problem girls— - inhabitants of Bedlam

Captain George Johnston found himself in Bedlam in 1846, suffering from mania, and he was also accused of murder.

Portraits of "problem girls— - inhabitants of Bedlam

John Bailey and his son Thomas were hospitalized in 1858 with acute melancholy.

Portraits of "problem girls— - inhabitants of Bedlam

Esther Hannah Still fell into Bedlam in the same year with acute mania and hallucinations.

Portraits of "problem girls— - inhabitants of Bedlam

The corridor of the hospital on the first floor in 1926.

Portraits of "problem girls— - inhabitants of Bedlam

The hospital is now located in Bromley, where it moved in 1930.

Portraits of "problem girls— - inhabitants of Bedlam

Erasmus Darwin, who came up with the idea of rotating patients on a suspended chair.

Portraits of "problem girls— - inhabitants of Bedlam

Edward Oxford, the first of the eight who attempted to assassinate Queen Victoria. He attempted an assassination attempt in 1840, firing twice, but never hit. He was declared insane and sent to Bedlam.

Keywords: XIX century | England | Hospital | Great Britain | Depression | Diagnosis | Mentally ill | Patients | Mental hospital | Psychiatry | Mental disorders

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