Posts Tagged ‘childbirth’

Marie Antoinette first childbirth

Marie-Antoinette’s first laying-in

At Versailles, not only the Queen, but princesses of the royal blood were required to give birth in public. Why? To prevent any substitution of the infant in case he was destined to reign. I say “he” by design, because France’s unwritten constitution prevented women to step unto the throne in their own right, though […]



Marie Antoinette childbirth

Childbirth in the 17th and 18th centuries

You may remember my earlier post on this topic. The comment trail started a fascinating discussion of the rates of maternal death in early-modern Europe. Now Holly Tucker, Associate Professor of Medical History, French and Italian at Vanderbilt University (and owner of the Wonders and Marvels blog) kindly agreed to research the issue for the […]



18th century French midwife diploma

Childbirth in the 17th and 18th centuries

Holly Tucker at Wonders and Marvels posted a great entry on early midwifery. I also call your attention to her other post, not for the faint of heart, on C-sections before anesthesia. It is estimated that, in the 17th and 18th centuries, one woman out of two died in childbirth. Staggering. How could it not […]