COVID-19 Update: We are currently shipping orders daily. However, due to transit disruptions in some geographies, deliveries may be delayed. To provide all customers with timely access to content, we are offering 50% off Science and Technology Print & eBook bundle options. Terms & conditions.
Woman - 1st Edition - ISBN: 9781483166704, 9781483194189


1st Edition

An Historical Gynæcological and Anthropological Compendium

Authors: Hermann Heinrich Ploss Max Bartels Paul Bartels
Editor: Eric John Dingwall
eBook ISBN: 9781483194189
Imprint: Butterworth-Heinemann
Published Date: 1st January 1935
Page Count: 552
Sales tax will be calculated at check-out Price includes VAT/GST
Price includes VAT/GST

Institutional Subscription

Secure Checkout

Personal information is secured with SSL technology.

Free Shipping

Free global shipping
No minimum order.


Woman: An Historical Gynælogical and Anthropological Compendium, Volume Three provides information pertinent to the obstruction in the normal process of labor. This book discusses the various ways and treatment, the obligations and duties of women among the different nations and races.

Organized into 21 chapters, this volume begins with an overview of the physical condition of women in child birth. This text then discusses the mechanical aids designed to hasten delivery and explains the external manipulations to bring about a normal presentation of the child. Other chapters provide a discussion of woman's milk as a medicine, especially for consumption. This book discusses as well the mutual relationship between grandmothers and their grandchildren. The final chapter deals with displayed special manners, customs, and superstitions at the death of a person who has remained unmarried, or of a woman who has died during pregnancy, in labor, or in childbed.

This book is a valuable resource for anthropologists.

Table of Contents

Volume Three

Chapter I Difficult and Abnormal Births

Primitive Concepts of Causes

Historical Data

The Chinese and Japanese Treatment of Difficult Labour

Difficult Labour due to Physical Defects in the Mother

The Rôle of the Embryo

Difficult Birth through Abnormal Channels

Difficult Labour due to the Placenta

Chapter II Difficult Labour in Popular Belief

Supernatural Help in Difficult Labour

Supernatural Help in Labour Among Ancient Civilised Peoples and their Successors

Supernatural Help in Labour Among the Ancient Teutons and Scandinavians

Supernatural Help in Labour Among the Latin Peoples

Supernatural Help in Labour Among the Peoples of Russia and the Slavs

Supernatural Help in Labour Among the Magyars, Gipsies and Modern Greeks

Supernatural Help in Labour Among the Japanese and Chinese

Supernatural Help in Labour Among the Pre-Columbian Inhabitants of Mexico

Supernatural Help in Labour Among the American Indians

Supernatural Help in Labour Among the African Tribes

Supernatural Help in Labour Among the Asiatic Peoples

Supernatural Help in Labour Among the Peoples of Oceania

Confession as an Expedient in Difficult Labour

Calling and Enticing the Child as Expedients in Difficult Labour

Chapter III Natural Means of Correcting Pathological Labour

Various Methods

Medicaments and Drugs

Internal Applications

External Application

Mechanical Means

Mechanical Means in Japan

Pressure as a Help in Difficult Labour

Severe Pressure on the Abdomen as a Help in Difficult Labour

Lacing and Squeezing the Abdomen as a Help in Difficult Labour

Suspension and Shaking of the Mother's Body as a Help in Difficult Labour

Chapter IV Birth in Cases of Abnormal Labour

Views of the Causes

Methods of External Manipulation in Cases of Abnormal Presentation

Inverting the Mother as a Help in Cases of Abnormal Presentation

Internal Manipulations as a Help in Cases of Abnormal Presentation

The Destruction and Dismemberment of the Child

Chapter V Cesare an Section

The Nature of the Operation

Delivery of the Living Child by Section from the Living Mother

Cæsarean Section Among Primitive Peoples

Chapter VI The Physiology and the Pathology of the Puerperium

The Physiological Significance of the Puerperium

The Dangers of the Puerperium

Hæmorrhage During the Puerperium

Primitive Methods of Prevention of Post-Partum Hæmorrhage

Prolapse of the Uterus in the Puerperium

After-Pains in the Puerperium

Puerperal Fever

Puerperal Insanity

Chapter VII The Therapy of the Puerperium

Restoration of the Genitals to their Normal Position

Fumigations During the Puerperium

Bathing and Washing

Washings and Sweat Baths in the Puerperium

Binding the Abdomen in the Puerperium

Chapter VIII The Management of the Mother in the Puerperal State

Standing and Sitting During the Puerperium

The Recumbent Position During the Puerperium

Food and Drink During the Puerperium

Lack of Proper Puerperal Hygiene

The Duration of the Puerperium

Chapter IX The Ceremonial, Symbolism and Mysticism of the Puerperium

The Special Room

Visits to the Woman in Childbed

The Unclean Period

The Unclean Period Among Civilised Nations

Differences in Uncleanness according to Sex of Child

Customs of the Puerperium

Superstition During the Puerperium

Ceremonial Among Primitive Peoples During the Puerperium

Ceremonial of the Puerperium Among Civilised Peoples

Chapter X Lactation

Physiology of Lactation

The Secretion of Milk in its Relation to Fertilisation and Menstruation

Lactation by the Mother

Duration of Lactation

Positions while Suckling

Lactation by Proxy and by Wet Nurses

Lactation by Animals

Lactation by the Grandmother

Lactation by the Father

Chapter XI The Female Breast in Custom and Tradition

Cultural Significance

Dietetics of the Lactation Period

Rules and Customs During Lactation

Dangers to Nursing Women

Dangers to Sucklings

Deficiency of Milk

The Weaning of the Child

Chapter XII Unusual Use of Woman's Milk

Woman's Milk as a Medicine and a Magical Agency

The Feeding of Adults with Woman's Milk

The Suckling of Young Animals by Women

Chapter XIII Woman in Relation to the Next Generation

Woman as Mother

Woman as Step-mother and Foster-Parent

Chapter XIV The Mature Woman in a State of Celibacy

The Old Maid

The Anthropological Aspect of the Old Maid

The Ethnography of the Old Maid

Chapter XV Woman as Saint

The Village Maiden

The Virgin Dedicated to God

The Sorceress, Prophetess and Fortune-Teller

The Witch

Modern Witchcraft

Women Saints

Chapter XVI The Widow


Suttee and the Killing of Widows

Prohibition, Compulsion and Permission for Widows to Remarry

The Rights of Widows

Unmarried Widows

Chapter XVII The Menopause or Climacteric

The Cessation of Menstruation

Highest Age of Impregnation

The Middle-Aged Woman in Her Anthropological Aspect

Earlier Views on the Anthropological Aspect of the Ageing Woman

The Time of the Menopause Among Extra-European Women

Chapter XVIII Woman as Grandmother

The Grandmother

The Mother-in-Law


Chapter XIX Woman in Old Age

Anthropological Aspects

Anthropological Significance of Senile Changes in Woman

Chapter XX Woman in Death

Natural Death

Unnatural Death

Suicide Among Women

Funeral Rites for Women

Confinement of Dead Women

Sexual Intercourse with the Dead

The Death of the Mother means the Death of the Child

Chapter XXI Woman After Death (Superstition)

The Dead Virgin

The Dead Bride

The Dead Menstruating Woman

The Dead Pregnant Woman

The Dead Woman in Labour

The Dead Woman in Childbed

The Burial-Place of the Woman Dying in Childbed

The Woman Dying in Childbed Returns as a Ghost

The Nursing Mother in Death

Impregnation of the Dead

Nuptials of the Dead

The Dead Woman who Returns

List of Authorities Quoted


No. of pages:
© Butterworth-Heinemann 2035
1st January 1935
eBook ISBN:

About the Authors

Hermann Heinrich Ploss

Max Bartels

Paul Bartels

About the Editor

Eric John Dingwall

Ratings and Reviews