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A vaginal speculum is used to examine inside the vagina to help medical diagnosis. It can also assist treating that area of the body. The intimate nature of its use caused initial opposition. However, the speculum had become a routine instrument in gynaecological examinations by the end of the 1800s. French instrument maker Aubry made this metal and ebony example.

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Glossary: vaginal speculum

Instrument for dilating the vagina, and throwing light within thus facilitating examination or surgical operations

Glossary: gynaecology

A branch of medicine dealing with the treatment of disorders affecting the female reproductive system.