Musée Fragonard de l’école vétérinaire

Fragonard Museum

A few kilometres from the capital, come and discover one of the oldest museums in France devoted to the study of the animal and human body.

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An unusual museum

Created in 1766, the Fragonard Museum, located within the National Veterinary School of Alfort contains a unique collection of casts, skeletons of domestic animals intended for the study of medicine. The collections presented are divided into several sections in which the animal is examined in all its facets.

The visit begins with the anatomy collections where the exhibition of animal parts, mainly reproductions of organs in coloured plaster, is still used by the students.
The museum also exhibits a large collection of bones. The skeletons are either presented reconstituted by the addition of iron wires or dissected so as to preserve the ligaments and thus present the animal in natural positions.
Because the museum serves the veterinary school, some display cases also present cases of malformations and abnormalities (studied in teratology) such as cyclops animals, stuffed two-headed animals, reproduced on drawn boards or present in the bones of the specimen.

The “écorchés” (flayed figures) by Fragonard

But, the centrepieces of the museum are real treasures for anatomical study. Les écorchés, living reproductions of the human body, were developed by Honoré Fragonard in the 18th century for the sake of scientific research. They were made from real corpses and by the injection of a mixture based on sheep tallow after dissection of the bodies. Thus preserved and varnished, the limbs and vessels were then staged in positions intended to make them as natural as possible. Twenty of these flayed figures are thus presented during the visit, including the impressive Man mounted on the back of a galloping horse!

A timeless museum

A surprising and fascinating place, the Fragonard Museum has survived the centuries and several moves to offer you today a trip to the beginning of the 20th century with exhibition rooms reproducing the location in 1902.

Each year, the museum, in line with its school, highlights animals during the exhibition "The animal as a monument" presenting monumental sculptures on campus. These works by renowned artists allow the visitor to take another look at the animal world.

And for natural history enthusiasts, visit Jardin des Plantes in Paris to take a tour of the Gallery of Paleontology and Comparative Anatomy of the National Museum of Natural History to complete your knowledge of natural sciences.

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Community facilities

Access and contact

94700 Maisons-Alfort

    Days and opening hours

    From 01/01 to 3112, every Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday between 2 pm and 6 pm. Closed exceptionally on January 1st, July 14th and December 25th. Closed in August. Closed on 24 and 31 December.


    • Full price: 8 € (from 26 years old (with audioguide)) Reduced price: 6 €.
      Free entry for children < 26 years.


    Spoken languages

    • French
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    94700 Maisons-Alfort

    • Copyright image:
    • Victor Boccard / EnvA