Cocked hat worn by French military surgeon

Made:
1790-1831 in Metz

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Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Cocked hat, beaver, belonging to military surgeon, French, 1790-1831

This hat was worn by a military surgeon in the French Army during the Napoleonic Wars (1803-15) in which Napoleon Bonaparte attempted, unsuccessfully, to build an Empire in Europe.

It was part of a colourful uniform with plenty of braid, buttons and buckles which would have become very unhygienic in the course of a military campaign. The brass medal on the front of the cocked beaver hat shows a snake coiled around a rod – the traditional symbol of medicine associated with Asklepios, the Greek and Roman god of healing.

Details

Category:
Surgery
Collection:
Sir Henry Wellcome's Museum Collection
Object Number:
A158237
Materials:
beaver, brass, cloth and leather
type:
hat
taxonomy:
  • furnishing and equipment
  • costume
  • headgear
credit:
Maison Cannessa