Operating table, Europe, 1881-1910
Operating tables may have had multiple uses. It is possible this example doubled as an obstetrical table because it has nickel-plated stirrups. These may have held the mother’s feet during childbirth. The padded table folds upward to create a backrest and the bottom shelf slides out, possibly to hold instruments. The table was used at Salpêtrière Hospital in Paris, a teaching hospital built by Louis XIV the 'Sun King' in 1656 on the site of a former gunpowder factory. Before this, the site housed prostitutes, the poor, and people with disabilities and mental illnesses. By the late 1700s, the Salpêtrière had become the world's largest hospital.
Related Themes and Topics
There are 538 related objects. View all related objects
Techniques and Technologies:
Glossary: operating table
A branch of medicine dealing with the care of women. This care occurs during pregnancy, childbirth, and the period of recovery from childbirth.
trial term S&H
Glossary: obstetrical examination table