Episode 22: Dr. William Smellie

William Smellie. Line engraving by R. Anderson after W. Smellie

In this episode, Jen gives us an introduction to a truly fascinating man, Dr. William Smellie (pronounced smiley). This Scottish obstetrician is considered the father of British midwifery and is responsible for some incredible inventions and achievements. But his work has just enough mystery and intrigue to pique our interest, so he’s ended up here on our show. Learn all about the things he invented and the deeply disturbing conjectures that persist to this day.

Run Time: 36 minutes, 29 seconds


Dr. William Smellie’s forcep design
Obstetrician tools from the 18th century

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