12 ampoules of ferruginous neurasthenic serum, London England, 1893-1936

Made:
1893-1936 in London
maker:
Allen & Hanburys Limited

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

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

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Buy this image as a print 

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

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12 ampoules of ferruginous neurasthenic serum, by Allen and Hanburys Ltd., in original carton, English. Full view, lid
Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

© The Board of Trustees of the
Science Museum Group

© The Board of Trustees of the
Science Museum Group

© The Board of Trustees of the
Science Museum Group

© The Board of Trustees of the
Science Museum Group

© The Board of Trustees of the
Science Museum Group

12 ampoules of ferruginous neurasthenic serum, in original carton, by Allen and Hanburys Limited, 7 Vere Street, Cavendish Square, London, W1, England, 1893-1936.

‘Azoule’ ferruginous neurasthenic serum (FNS injection) was sold as a strengthening tonic for neuresthenia, anemia and circulation disorders. Neurasthenia is Greek for ‘nerve weakness’ and the disease was identified and named in the late 1800s. Nervous illnesses and nervous breakdown became increasingly diagnosed in North America and Europe at this time. Neurasthenia was supposedly caused by modern industrialised societies. However, it was never clearly defined and became a catch-all term for ‘nervous disorders’. These 12 glass ampoules were made by British company Allen & Hanburys Limited. They contain strychnine cacodylate, a mixture of strychnine and organic arsenic. Strychnine is a dangerous poison used as a stimulant for the central nervous system and to treat nerve disorders. It was one of a range of ‘medicines’ available during the early years of the twentieth century which worked on the widely held belief that small doses of poisons were a tonic for the body. The medicine was administered by intravenous injection.

Details

Category:
Public Health & Hygiene
Object Number:
A601053
Materials:
ampoules, glass, carton, paper
type:
ampoule
taxonomy:
  • furnishing and equipment
  • container - receptacle
  • vessel
status:
Loan: Wellcome Trust

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