Obstetrics and Gynaecology
Smellie, William, 1697-1763
A set of anatomical tables : with explanations, and an abridgement of the practice of midwifery; with a view to illustrate a treatise on that subject, and collection of cases.
Edinburgh : Printed for Charles Elliot, and C. Elliot and T. Kay ... London, 1790.
New ed. with an entire new set of plates, carefully corrected and revised; with notes and ill. adapted to the present improved method of practice by A. Hamilton.
Medically trained in Scotland, William Smellie learned obstetrics in Paris then settled in London where he developed a large practice amongst the rich and fashionable. He pioneered the participation of doctors in obstetrics which was vehemently opposed by the midwives. His book describes rules for safe delivery and the plates are all obstetric. Although the text itself went through many editions and translations the plates are said to have been printed in a limited edition of only 100 copies. His inventiveness appealed to the profession - he taught obstetrics using a leather covered skeleton as a manikin (and charged 3 guineas for the course) and designed several types of obstetric forceps. William Hunter, the anatomist, was his resident pupil and Tobias Smollett, the novelist, was a friend.