Name/TitleLowder's Ebony Handled Folding Vectis
About this objectA vectis was used to help turn a baby whilst in the womb and so facilitate delivery. In the eighteenth and nineteenth century this type of instrument ws, like midwifery forceps (which consist of two pieces), particularly important to assist with breech births, where a baby was in the feet first position to be born. In the past, this type of delivery could potentially cause danger to both the child and mother's health. This design was introduced by Dr William Lowder, obsterician to the old Guy's and St Thomas' United Hospital (d.1801). The vectis being adjustable to be set at a right angle allowed for an additional shorter reach and also for a more compact carriage in the pocket.
Maker RoleDesigner of the instrument
Medium and MaterialsSteel, ebony
Subject and Association KeywordsObstetrics
Named CollectionUsed at the old St Thomas' Hospital site, St Thomas Street, London SE1
Object TypeVectis: Lowder's
Copyright LicenceAll rights reserved