Lazarus and Joannes Baptista Colloredo
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The upper body and left leg of Joannes Baptista (named after John the Baptist) stuck out of his mobile brother, Lazarus. He did not speak, kept his eyes closed and mouth open all the time, and was a parasitic twin. According to a later account by Copenhagen anatomist Thomas Bartholinus, if someone pushed the breast of Joannes Baptista, he moved his hands, ears, and lips.
To make a living, Lazarus toured around Europe and visited at least Basel, Switzerland and Copenhagen, Denmark before he arrived in Scotland in 1642 and later visited the court of Charles I of England.
Contemporary accounts described Lazarus as courteous and handsome, but for his brother who just dangled before him. When Lazarus was not exhibiting himself, he covered his brother with his cloak to avoid unnecessary attention.
Sentenced to death
As reported by Henri Sauval, Lazarus was sentenced to death for killing a man, but averted the execution by pointing out that this would also kill his innocent twin brother.
Disappearance from record
The brothers' exact date of death is unknown. They are last mentioned c. 1646.
- Gould, George M. & Pyle, and Walter L. (1896) Anomalies and Curiosities of Medicine. Retrieved July 5, 2007.
- "Lazarus and Johannes Baptista Colloredo." (n.d.). Phreeque.com. Retrieved July 5, 2007.
- Baratta Luca (2016), «A Marvellous and Strange Event». Racconti di nascite mostruose nell’Inghilterra della prima età moderna, Firenze, Firenze University Press, pp. 182-201 [ISBN 978-88-6453-344-5].
- Baratta Luca (2017), The Age of Monsters. Nascite prodigiose nell’Inghilterra della prima età moderna: storia, testi, immagini (1550-1715), prefazione di Maurizio Ascari, Roma, Aracne, 2017, pp. 351-386 [ISBN 978-88-2550-957-1].
- Baratta Luca (2018), ‘Due idee del mostruoso, due idee di nazione. I gemelli Colloredo a Londra (1637) in due ballate di Robert Milbourne e Martin Parker’, Rivista di Letterature Moderne e Comparate, 70(2), pp. 109-131 [ISSN 0391-2108].