18th Century Antique Pewter Syphilis Syringe.
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18th Century Antique Pewter Syphilis Syringe.:
The pewter syringe is in pretty good condition. The plunger travels fairly freely and will eject air or fluid from the nozzle. There are a few small dints but they don't affect it's working.
The seal is provided by tightly wound string on the plunger and this is probably getting a little fragile due to it's age. String bound seals were typical of 18th early 19th century syringes. The syringe is 21cm extended and the barrel is 9cm long and about 1.8cm in diameter.
This type of syphilis syringe with it's characteristic offset curved nozzle would have been found on sailing vessels of the time to treat infected sailors. The nozzle would be inserted in the urethra and a solution of mercuric chloride injected. The results of this treatment were often very successful, butunfortunately mercury poisoning often resulted, giving rise to the expression " A night with Venus a lifetime with Mercury ".
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