The History of Bethlem Hospital

3 09 2012

In researching the history of restraint as a form of treatment we came across this excellent (and entertaining) lecture by archivist Colin Gale on the history of Bethlem Hospital, also known in popular parlance as Bedlam. Bethlem Hospital was founded in London in 1247 and is considered by many the world’s first asylum. As highlighted in the lecture, the hospital had a practice of allowing public tours of the facilities during its history, a questionable practice that has left some interesting eye witness accounts of the facilities and practices.

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