Pewter bleeding bowl, Europe, 1601-1900

1601-1900 in Europe

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Pewter bleeding bowl, 17th-19th century. Black perspex background.
Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Pewter bleeding bowl, 1601-1900

Bleeding bowls were used to collect blood during bloodletting – a practice once carried out to treat a wide range of diseases and medical conditions. Bloodletting was used as cure for many fevers, diseases which were believed to be caused by a build up of blood.

This bowl is made from pewter and has a scale marked in fluid ounces engraved on the inside to allow accurate monitoring of the volume of blood being removed. One ounce is equal to 28.4 ml.


Object Number:
bleeding bowl
  • furnishing and equipment
  • container - receptacle
  • furnishing and equipment
  • container - receptacle

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