A rare instrument designed as an adjunct to the surgical correction of inguinal hernia. It is beautifully constructed from ebony and silver and comprises a cylinder hinged in two halves, a needle and a cover.
After restoring the hernia the apparatus would have been inserted in the wound and the handle then removed, leaving the cover in place for 6-8 days to produce adhesions which would seal off the hernia. Which “By their most earnest advocates have been considered applicable to the smallest most recent and least troublesome hernias”, their value being otherwise “denied or seriously questioned“. In other words … they did not work!
The instrument is marked Mappin 16 Newhall Street. John Mappin was latter the partner of Mappin and Web. The 1851 census shows no. 61 Newhall with the Mappins in residence (Ann and her children – husband John appears to be absent). No. 61 is not present in the 1861 census.