There were around 4,500 items all documented and catalogued by
the year 1881, but unfortunately, during the early part of the 20th century the museum
lost many of its exhibits one way or another and there were only a few hundred item
remaining that Charles Nicolas Houel had catalogued.
However, after World War II Professor Andre Delmas began the task of restoring and
enlarging the Musee Orfila, when he also integrated a collection of Professor Henri
Rouviere from the Musee Rouviere and hence why this French museum is now also known as the
Musee d'Anatomie Delmas-Orfila-Rouviere.
It is situated in the 6th Arrondissement of Paris
and now holds approximately 5,500 human and animal anatomical items including mouldings of
livers, hearts and lungs, a preserved monkey, castings of brains which have accumulated
throughout around two centuries, skulls, and exhibits that show stages of growth of the
skeletal structure, plus numerous other exhibits that are too numerous to mention.
The Musee d'Anatomie Delmas-Orfila-Rouviere also includes exhibits known as the Spitzner
collection, which is a famous set of anatomical wax models that date back to the 19th
Unfortunately, this museum in Paris is only open by
prior appointment, which you must arrange by telephone well in advance and is only open on
a Tuesday and Thursday from 2pm through to 5pm. It is closed on all other days
including national holidays.
The nearest Metro station is the Saint Germain des Prés and you would need to take line 4
or alternatively it is only a short walk from the River Seine
if you have opted to take the Batobus.
But this particular museum is very specialised and visited more by groups of students,
historians and scientists for the quality of its varied and important exhibits.
Address & Contact Details:
Musée d'Anatomie Delmas-Orfila-Rouviere
Paris V René Descartes University
45 Rue des Saints-Pères
Telephone: 1 42 86 20 47