Pill coating machine, France, 1915-1925

1915-1925 in France

Buy this image as a print 

License this image for commercial use at Science and Society Picture Library

Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Pill coating machine for adding a sugar coat, machine-turned (?) copper drum on decorated brass pedestal, French, 1915-1925

Originally attached to a motor to rotate the copper drum, this machine was used to give pills and tablets a sugar coating. The copper drum was warmed and the gelatine or mucilage (a sticky glue-like substance) was added. Pills already dusted with sugar were added to the warm copper drum and rotated in the mucilage to make sure the sugar stuck to the pills. Sugar coated pills and tablets are easier to swallow and took away any bitter taste.

On display

Science Museum: Making the Modern World Gallery

If you are visiting to see this object, please contact us in advance to make sure that it will be on display.


Object Number:
brass, complete, copper alloy and lacquer
pill coating machine
Christie's South Kensington Limited

Cite this page


We encourage the use and reuse of our collection data.

Data in the title, made, maker and details fields are released under Creative Commons Zero

Descriptions and all other text content are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 licence

Using our data


Download catalogue entry as json

View manifest in IIIF viewer

Add to Animal Crossing Art Generator

Download manifest IIIF

Our records are constantly being enhanced and improved, but please note that we cannot guarantee the accuracy of any information shown on this website.