Ivory female anatomical figure, Europe, undated

Made:
undated in Europe
maker:
Unknown

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Ivory anatomical figure of a pregnant female. Top view, whole object, grey background.
Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

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

Ivory anatomical figure of a pregnant female. Top view, whole object, grey background.
Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

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

Ivory anatomical figure, a pregnant female, with some removable internal organs, on wooden stand

Female ivory anatomical models of this type were popular in the 1600s and 1700s, and were almost always shown as pregnant. In this example the foetus is shown in the uterus, ready to be born. It is connected to the mother by an umbilical cord made from red thread. Carved from ivory, representations of the heart, lungs and liver can also be seen.

These anatomical figures normally came in male and female pairs. The organs are not very detailed so it is unlikely that the model was made for medical teaching. The figure was possibly used to teach young couples about anatomy and pregnancy or it may have been a collector’s item.

Details

Category:
Anatomy & Pathology
Object Number:
A642634
Materials:
figure, ivory, stand, cloth, stand, wood
type:
anatomical figures, anatomy (anatomical figures), obstetrics (general) anatomical figures, anatomy (anatomical figures), females, obstetrics (general)
taxonomy:
  • furnishing and equipment
  • tools & equipment
  • medical demonstration equipment

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