Anthropometric instruments used by Professor James Tanner, Europe, 1945-1990
This collection of instruments was used by James Tanner (b. 1920), Professor of Child Health and Growth at the Institute of Child Health, University of London. Tanner is best known for including a child’s surrounding physical and social environment into the study of growth (auxology). The instruments were donated to the Science Museum’s collection by the Institute of Child Health.
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The measuring of body parts so that comparisons can be made. The aim is to measure normal and abnormal development. In the past, it has also been used in attempts to measure racial difference.
Glossary: anthropometric equipment