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1997 will be a sad year for lovers of the Mutter Museum calendar, produced since 1993 by the fascinating medical museum in Philadelphia. The award-winning calendar highlighted objects from the museum's collection, including the skeleton of twins fused at the head and a wax model of a patient with syphilitic leukoplakia of the tongue (above). The calendar sold thousands of copies and won fans as diverse as the Las Vegas magician Teller (of Penn & Teller) and Harvard University professor of biology Stephen Jay Gould, who calls them "works of art." The calendars earned as much as $15,000 annually for the College of Physicians of Philadelphia, of which the Mutter is a part.

Now, however, Dr. Marc Micozzi, executive director of the college, has canceled the calendar, deciding that it presents the wrong image. Gretchen Worden, director of the Mutter, had hoped otherwise: "Our goal was to promote the museum and the College of Physicians to a wider audience--and we achieved that."

College officials promise that there will be a new calendar in 1998, one that "reflects the diversity of the college." Critics are worried that the result will be a sanitized version that will interest few. Says author and neurologist (and calendar fan) Dr. Oliver Sacks: "There's nothing improper or grotesque about it--and only a certain kind of immature or prurient mind would see these exhibits that way."

--By Jeffery C. Rubin