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Earthenware inhaler, London, England, 1866-1905

Inhalers are used to treat chest illnesses and diseases by inhalation. The inhaler has a valved mouthpiece where a sponge soaked in the treatment would be placed. It was first manufactured around 1866. Around 1881, a valved inhaler would cost 5 shillings (25p). The inhaler was made by S Maw & Son, a medical and surgical supplier. The mouthpiece is probably a replacement as it bears the name of S Maw, Son & Thompson, a company name used much later.

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    Techniques and Technologies:


    Glossary: inhalation

    The drawing of air or other substances into the lungs

    Glossary: inhaler

    A device for breathing in a drug in order to deliver it to the airways or lungs.

    Glossary: earthenware

    Pottery made of clay which is fired at a relatively low temperature. Earthenware is often semi-porous, meaning some liquid or air can pass through it. This can be altered by treating the pottery with a glaze.