Copy of Chamberlen obstetric forceps

Made:
1813 in Europe
maker:
Unknown

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

Science Museum Group
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum, London.

Science Museum Group
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum, London.

Copy of obstetric forceps, invented and used by Chamberlen

The blades of these innovative obstetric forceps cross like scissors. They are separated so they can be inserted one at a time. They are then rejoined with a rivet or a thong.

Obstetric forceps grip the baby’s head during childbirth. The modern use of such forceps lies with those designed and used by the Chamberlen family from the late 1600s. The Chamberlens were successful men-midwives. However, they kept the design of their instruments secret for well over a century.

On display

Science Museum: Medicine: The Wellcome Galleries

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Details

Category:
Obstetrics, Gynaecology & Contraception
Object Number:
A600050
Measurements:
overall (as displayed in Journeys): 50 mm x 280 mm x 120 mm, .22 kg
type:
obstetrical forceps, obstetrics (instruments) copies, obstetrical forceps, obstetrics (instruments)
taxonomy:
  • furnishing and equipment
  • tools & equipment
  • medical instrument
  • obstetrical instrument
credit:
Loan, Wellcome Trust

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