Forceps, obstetrical, Chamberlen, steel, 1680-1750
The Chamberlen family escaped religious persecution in France to settle in England in 1569. Peter (the Elder) Chamberlen (d. 1631) is thought to have invented the obstetrical forceps. Other family members modified the original design. The Chamberlens were among the early ‘man-midwives’. They became famous for dealing with difficult births, but the forceps were a family secret for over 100 years. The forceps were common knowledge by the 1730s yet took time to be used extensively. Obstetrical forceps grip a baby’s head during difficult labours to help delivery. This example is made from steel.
- Obstetrics, Gynaecology & Contraception
- Object Number:
- obstetrical forceps and obstetrics (instruments) chamberlen, obstetrical forceps and obstetrics (instruments)
- furnishing and equipment
- tools & equipment
- medical instrument
- obstetrical instrument
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
Download catalogue entry as json
View manifest in IIIF viewer
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.