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Buckingham Palace

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Source: icture of Sir James Young Simpson (Henry Laing Gordon)

There were no anaesthetics until Dr John Snow administered ether (ie chloroform) to Victoria during the births of Prince Leopold and Princess Beatrice. Leopold was born on 7 April 1853 at Buckingham Palace, London. During labour, Queen Victoria chose to use chloroform and thus sanctioned the use of anesthesia in childbirth, recently developed by Professor James Young Simpson. Queen Victoria herself called it "that blessed chloroform" and its effect "soothing, quieting and delightful beyond measure". Some religeous leaders and doctors opposed to its use, arguing that God intended for childbirth to be difficult: (Genesis 3:16) "I will make your pains in childbearing very severe."


United Kingdom

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