Wax copy of a phrenological head, with areas marked off and labelled, on wooden stand with glass cover
This human skull is marked into sections and was probably used for phrenological consultations. Phrenologists believed the shape and size of areas of the brain (and therefore the overlying skull) determined personality. Phrenological heads were used as reference guides during consultations. Phrenology was popular with large numbers of people in the 1800s. However, it became controversial within the medical profession and was dismissed as unfounded.