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Man-Midwifery Dissected; or, the Obstetric Family Instructor
Blunt, John
Published by Samuel William Fores, London
Location of original: Countway Rare Books, Harvard University
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Page 178




Italy, where males are employed to attend ladies in bed, to dress and undress them, and to place their chauffette under their petticoats, and all this in the absence of their husbands; nay, fashion requires the husband to seem satisfied with it all, and to hire the said man, called a cicisbeo*: nor are British husbands, who permit men to deliver their wives in preference to women, and at the same time voluntarily withdraw, a jot more wise than Italian husbands; both are equally slaves to the custom of their country, without considering the impropriety thereof. I will also venture to say, that every woman who can procure a skilful midwife and yet voluntarily permits male service in natural labour, when her husband is absent, would also be contented with the service of a cicisbeo, instead of a waiting-maid, if she lived at Genoa, where fashion justifies it.

 But what is the reason that midwives are more ignorant of their profession, now that they are instructed by male-teachers, than a century ago, when they taught each other? The reason is obvious; it is not likely that those
*Voyez L'Espion Chinois.
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