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Contraceptive tampon, United Kingdom, 1920-1960

Using ‘tampon-like’ devices as a barrier contraceptive has a long history. One of the earliest references comes from Ancient Egypt in the Ebers Papyrus dating from 1875BCE. It references tampons made of papyrus. It also references a mixture of acacia berries and colocynth mixed with honey used as a spermicide. This medicated tampon is made of cotton wool. It dates from the mid-1900s. The tampon was one of a range of contraceptives encouraged by the Marie Stopes Foundation. The foundation donated this object. It supported and advised women on family planning.

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Glossary: contraception

The use of methods and techniques to prevent pregnancy from sex.

Glossary: tampon

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