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Brass warming-pan, Europe, 1801-1900

Filled with hot coals, this brass warming-pan was used to heat beds to make patients feel more comfortable. This was a common way of warming cold hospital beds before wards were adequately heated. The lid is hinged, to allow hot coals to be placed inside and has a floral and star pattern.

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Glossary: nursing

The study and practice of caring for and waiting on the sick, injured, or others unable to look after themselves or to deal with their specific medical needs.

Glossary: warming-pan

A container (usually brass) for live coals with a flat body and a long handle, used for warming a bed