It began with a shark’s head

In 1666 fisherman off the coast of Livorno caught a large shark and presented it to Niels Steensen’s benefactor, Grand Duke Leopold II, who  decided that Steensen should dissect the shark. Steensen published his observations in a short treatise,  Canis…


In the summer of 1661 he vacationed with Ole Borch and visited the Zuidersee and the university town of Groningen.

Prospect of Hamburg. Creator: Wenceslas Hollar.


From Rostock he would have gone on to Hamburg, where  he would have undoubtedly seen the cathedral and perhaps the Spinnhaus and the Zuchthaus.



From Dunkerque Niels Steensen could see England, a country he was never to visit. On his visit he would have seen this belfry, which still stands today.