Coloured cartoon from the Northern Looking Glass 18 August 1825, the third in the series "Essay on Modern Medical Education". Entitled "Watching and Warding" it depicts people gathered around a lantern in a graveyard, canoodling and drinking.
Such was the extent of body snatching from graveyards in the city, that citizens would gather in the grave yard for several nights after a burial to ensure that the body of a friend or relative was not dug up by "resurrectionists" seeking fresh cadavres to sell to a medical school for dissection. In this cartoon, the "watchers" have turned their vigil into a night of drinking and merriment. While they carouse the body snatchers have exhumed a body and are sneaking it over the kirkyard wall still wrapped in its mortcloth.
Reference: Sp Coll Bh14-x.8
Glasgow University Library, Special Collections
cadavres, canoodling, cemeteries, corpses, dissection, drinking, drunkenness, Glasgow Looking Glass, grave robers, gravestones, graveyards, lithographs, mortcloths, Northern Looking Glass, resurrectionists, watchers, watching and warding