The Royal Surgical Academy on Bredgade in Copenhagen functioned in 1785-1842 as an educational institution for surgeons. Back then, the academy educated the majority of Denmark's general practitioners. In 1842, the Royal Surgical Academy became part of the university's medical faculty. The fledgling doctors attended lectures in the academy's beautiful auditorium, which for a long time was the largest in the city. They also observed dissection of human corpses there. To the great consternation of the Church, students were taught the new scientific approach to anatomy. The building on Bredgade was designed by architect Peter Meyn and now houses the Medical Museion.
Future surgeons were taught dissection and anatomy in the Royal Surgical Academy's neo-classicistic auditorium. Corpses of executed criminals were carved up and examined. The idea was to give students a practical, specific understanding of the human body. The teaching was based on the anatomical revolution, which had arisen during the renaissance. In the anatomy theatres of Europe, surgeons were beginning to dissect corpses to gain new anatomical insight. The new anatomy was based on personal examinations and not on religious or ancient traditions. The earliest human dissections were carried out as public displays, and not until later were dissections carried out with research and teaching in mind. The first public dissection in Copenhagen took place in 1645 in the city's newly furnished anatomical theatre. The dissection process stretched out over 14 days.