Cupping horn set "Ostrobothnia"


Finland, late 19th century, private collection from Finland.

The cupping is based on the classical conception of humor of the four basic fluids in man: blood, phlegm, black and yellow bile. Based on Hippocratic medicine, it was believed that the four humors were to be in balanced proportions with regard to amount and strength of each humor for a body to be healthy. Inbalance and separation of humors leeds to diseases. The venous blood is removed from the patient using cupping horns or suction cups. The blood is drawn by local suction from small incision. In Finland, wet cupping has been done at least since the 15th century, and it is done traditionally in saunas.

These original cupping horns were made of cattle horns attached with a valve mechanism (a piece of pig bladder) in it to create a partial vacuum by sucking the air out. Initials are engraved on some of the cupping horns. Good condition. Some horns without pig bladder piece. Six cupping horns in a beautiful veneered box. Age-related wear and signs of use. Dirt, dust and minor defects. Gorgeous patina. Size of the cupping horns c. 7cm to 11,5cm. Size of the box 16,5cm x 12,0cm x 9,0cm.