The use of the bottle

The use of the bottle

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  • Advertising plate "Robert bottles, not exhausting the children".

  • Advertising plate "Robert bottles. Perfected, without tube".

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Title: Advertising plate "Robert bottles, not exhausting the children".

Author :

Date shown:

Dimensions: Height 38.3 - Width 25.1

Technique and other indications: Revon et cie printing, end of the 19the century White iron, painted.

Storage place: MuCEM website

Contact copyright: © MuCEM, Dist RMN-Grand Palais / Jean-Gilles Berizzisite web

Picture reference: 08-521906 / 1996.48.7

Advertising plate "Robert bottles, not exhausting the children".

© MuCEM, Dist RMN-Grand Palais / Jean-Gilles Berizzi

To close

Title: Advertising plate "Robert bottles. Perfected, without tube".

Author :

Date shown:

Dimensions: Height 26 - Width 38.5

Technique and other indications: Carried out by Breger and Javal, between 1890 and 1900, decorated with medals and dates of awards (from 1880 to 1887).

Storage place: MuCEM website

Contact copyright: © MuCEM, Dist RMN-Grand Palais / Jean-Gilles Berizzisite web

Picture reference: 08-521830 / 1996.48.8

Advertising plate "Robert bottles. Perfected, without tube".

© MuCEM, Dist RMN-Grand Palais / Jean-Gilles Berizzi

Publication date: November 2008

Historical context

Deadly milk

The notion of hygiene appears in the 18th centurye century, with special interest in children and newborns. The quality of milk and bottle will be at the center of the concerns of doctors and hygienists of the XIXe century.

Image Analysis

Industrial breastfeeding

Whether made of clay, pewter or glass, the bottle has been available in a variety of forms since Antiquity. Faced with the widespread practice of artificial breastfeeding, an important company will specialize in this trade: that of Édouard Robert. Founded in Dijon in 1869, it was transferred to Paris around 1880 and manufactured millions of baby bottles and teats in various shapes. This empire then occupied an entire district of Paris, of which there remains today the rue Édouard Robert, in the 12e borough.

The advertising plaque recalls the tremendous success of the tube feeding bottle invented around 1860. The tube, sometimes fifty centimeters long, allows the baby to feed himself, at will, thus freeing a nurse often monopolized by several infants. In a golden rococo-style frame is represented a baby, blond with blue eyes, a medal around his neck. He sits in a nest in the middle of a flowering tree, sucking on a long-tube bottle alone. The advertisement here recreates a peaceful image of an independent child waiting in his nest. The tube feeding bottle is thus experiencing a constant craze among mothers and nurses. But this model, declared dangerous during a debate in Parliament, ended up being banned in France. Impossible to clean, the rubber tube indeed promotes the proliferation of microbes and, therefore, the death of the intoxicated baby.

The second advertising plaque shows a so-called “dab” shaped bottle with a pacifier. The hook specifies that this bottle is without a tube, a safety deposit for the child. For the sake of reassurance, the Robert house reports on its patents and the many awards it has received around the world: gold medal in Brussels and Melbourne in 1880, in Paris in 1882, 1883 and 1887, between other. She specifies: “26 years of success, two million bottles sold per year. "The company is showing its longevity in the field, a guarantee of professionalism and seriousness. The success is immense and the popularity of the brand will go so far as to give its name, in slang, to women's breasts.


Scientific and healthy milk

The great danger of bottle-feeding comes from the lack of hygiene, poor storage of milk, the use of raw and often adulterated milk, and the use of rusty metal bottles. In 1881, Dr. Fauvel revealed to the Academy of Medicine that, out of thirty-one baby bottles examined, twenty-eight contained fungal adenoids and numerous colonies of infectious diarrhea and infantile cholera microbes. In 1885, this type of contamination caused the death of 20 and 30% of infants, and it was not until the International Hygiene Congress of 1889 that the medical profession finally unanimously recommended boiled milk. That same year, the World Expo report devotes a chapter to milk hygiene and discusses the method of sterilization, without chemical addition. In fact, the milk collected by Louis Pasteur in sterilized vessels turned out to be free of bacteria. To obtain healthy milk, the sanitary control of the barns is essential (in order to detect cows carrying tuberculosis) as well as the sale of pasteurized milk and the education of mothers in domestic sterilization. These measures lead to a significant drop in infant mortality, which is contributing to the growing use of hygiene items touted by advertising which increasingly concerns the privacy of the family unit.

  • childhood
  • hygiene
  • innovation
  • medicine
  • childcare
  • Pastor (Louis)


Anne COVA, Maternity and women's rights in France (19th-20th century), Paris, Anthropos, 1997.Geneviève DELAISI DE PARSEVAL and Suzanne LALLEMAND, The art of accommodating babies, Paris, Odile Jacob, 1998. Marie-Claude DELAHAYE, Bottle-fed babies, a brief history of breastfeeding, Paris, Éditions Hoëbeke, 2003.Nanny or crèche - History of the child kept in the 19th century, catalog of the exhibition at the Château Saint-Jean museum, 4 July-12 October 1998, Nogent-le-Rotrou, 1998.

To cite this article

Valérie RANSON-ENGUIALE, "The use of the bottle"

Video: HD How to Use the Quench Glass Infuser Bottle


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