This primary source read-along is from a chapter in Mrs Thomas Little’s Domestic Institutes of Young Mothers, specifically the third edition published in 1824. The chapter is the advice for self-care during pregnancy from Mrs Little’s friend, the late Sir Richard Croft, 6th Baronet, a royal physician and an accoucheur (man-midwife).
Sir Croft attended Princess Charlotte during her first labour in November of 1817, resulting in the Triple Obstetric Tragedy, in which two generations of heirs to the British throne died. Princess Charlotte’s son was stillborn after fifty hours of labour, then she died while recovering, and the following year, Sir Croft himself committed suicide. It was the deaths of Princess Charlotte and her son that led to the birth and accession of Queen Victoria.
As always, I produce these read-alongs to help more people get involved in the primary source material. Nothing contained in these primary sources (this one is nearly 200 years old) should be taken as medical or dietary advice. Please, do not drink a bottle of claret daily for six or seven months while pregnant… or at all.
The chapter includes recommendations on everything from sore boobs, a sore back, morning sickness, varicose veins, insomnia, constipation, dizziness, fainting, nose bleeds, and more.
Read the book in full on Archive.org.
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