The word cancer comes from Latin and means crab. It is also related to the Greek word karkinos that means crayfish. Greeks named tumours by analogy with the crustacean because they « have veins spreading from the sides, likewise the crab has legs » as described by Hippocrates 4th century B.C. « When cancer takes hold of an organ, it doesn’t let it go, likewise the crab when it grabs onto something ».
Samples from this collection entitled Cancer are gleaned on the East coast of England near the Thames’ estuary. These are called wracks : entanglement of different species of seaweed and marine life, nowadays jumbled with fishing lines and detritus.