Bronze Roman cupping vessel, 1-79 AD.

Image number: 10289162

Bronze Roman cupping vessel, 1-79 AD.

This bronze cupping vessel is from Pompeii, Italy. Cupping was a popular Roman practice, which aimed to draw poisonous substances and 'vicious humours' from the body. A cup containing a piece of burning cloth was pressed onto the skin. The burning used up the oxygen in the air in the cup, producing a partial vacuum, which powerfully sucked the cup on to the body. Dry cupping was performed on unbroken skin; wet cupping covered a wound or deliberate incision, and drew out blood, pus and other body fluids.

Image number:
10289162
Credit:
Science Museum/Science & Society Picture Library
Date taken:
12 January 2004 16:07
Image rights:
Science Museum