Tarnier’s articulated bronze female pelvis


An Tarnier’s articulated bronze female pelvis and sacrum, last quarter 19th century, signed on the calibrated scale “ Baldinelli Milano.”. The remarkable realistic bronze pelvis measures 25 x 25 x 10cm overall, and is mounted by two steel pillars to a 23 x 51 cm wooden backboard. A bronze sacrum (the lower end of the vertebral column) is hinged to the board with a steel linkage and guide rod indexed against a linear scale graduated from 3 to 11 by halves, indicating the anterior / posterior diameter. Condition is very fine, noting one short break in the board, Total weight is 30 pounds!

The articulated pelvis (the “basin artificiel”) is illustrated in Witkowski’s 1887 L’arsenal Obstétrical in two forms, that of Tarnier constructed by Mathieu, and that of Fabri of Bologna (see attachment) as modified by Joulin and constructed by Collin. The latter is illustrated in various Collin catalogues, attributed to Tarnier, and so described here. Etienne Tarnier (1828-1897) was a French obstetrical surgeon, inventor of the Tarnier forceps (Garrison-Morton 6192). The model reproduces the anterior / posterior angle, important for diagnosing the need for Caesarean delivery for a particular patient. The first example of this wonderful bronze sculpture we have seen.

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