The Vibrator was Created to Cure a Bizarre Condition Called "Wandering Wombs" in the 19th Century

Yana Bostongirl

In the 19th century, women's hysteria was attributed to a bizarre condition known as "wandering wombs" where a discontented uterus was assumed to be the cause. Greek physicians were especially interested in the womb and believed it could head upward and downward, and left and right to collide with the liver or spleen. They even had a method of luring back the womb to its correct position by the use of fragrant smells as well as foul smells on the patient and depending on the situation.

This, in turn, gave rise to a slew of purported remedies by quacks that promised a cure. As a result of this, women were subjected to hypnosis, blasting their abdomen with jets of water and the creation of a device (the vibrator) that would induce a hysterical paroxysm thus relieving the patient of their affliction.

At first, this was a job to be done manually by Victorian-era doctors until Dr. Joseph Mortimer Granville created a "medical instrument" that was electro-mechanical in nature and enabled women to give themselves home massages thus relieving the doctors of doing the cumbersome deed themselves.

Here is an excerpt from history.com that explains how the vibrator came into being: "We have 19th-century doctors to thank for the introduction of the vibrator, which was first advertised as a cure for a catch-all, female “disease” known as hysteria. Hysteria was believed to cause any number of maladies, including anxiety, irritability, sexual desire, insomnia, faintness, and a bloated stomach—so almost every woman showed some symptoms."

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