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Silver sick siphon, 1801-1830

The sick siphon has a misleading name. It had nothing to do with vomiting. It was the user who was likely to be sick – or elderly. The siphon is hooked over the side of a cup of soup or water and then used like a straw to drink the liquid. The bottom has a pierced cover to strain food and ensure that no large lumps were drunk.

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Glossary: sick siphon

Scroll shaped silver tube with a hook on one side to attach it to a cup of liquid. The lower end is closed by a hinged and pierced cover to strain the food.

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.