Tonsil guillotine, Paris, France, 1866-1870

1866-1870 in Paris

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Tonsil guillotine, steel and ivory, by Robert and Collin, c.1870

A tonsil guillotine is used to remove the tonsils in a procedure called tonsillectomy. Removing the tonsils was a treatment for recurrent throat infections. Tonsillectomy by guillotine, popular in the late 1800s, fell out of favour in the early 1900s due to the high numbers of people who experienced heavy bleeding and recurrent sore throats.

Robert and Collin, who made this item, were students of the famous surgical instrument maker Joseph-Frédéric Benoît Charrière (1803-1876). They purchased the business in 1866 after Charrière’s son, who had owned it from his father’s retirement in 1852, died. Robert left the business in 1870, leaving Collin as the sole owner.


Object Number:
A612881 Pt1
brass, ivory and steel
tonsil guillotine
  • furnishing and equipment
  • tools & equipment
  • surgical equipment
  • surgical instrument

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