Why do people in 16th-17th century woodcuts and engravings always look like villains and rogues. I'm assuming that this pair are actually perfectly respectable patients.
No one looks good under that sort of treatment. I would like to imagine that as soon as it was done, they went right back to dancing in their Pointy Boots. Ole'!
Interesting observation. The ones that don't really stand out. Disease burden, and maybe people were in general uglier back then (see also this).Among other things, I think the guy on the left has scrofula.
Have to disagree with Anonymous. A Vermeer portrait of a young woman being trepanned would merely look like Scarlett Johansson with a slight eye strain. The same girl in a woodcut, however, would resemble a deranged street hag willing to sell her body for a few dirty Gilders. But I do agree with his or her point about the rehabilitation potential of pointy boots
Fez, his pointy boot reference was to a video I linked to in a comment on another site.