Angélique Marguerite Le Boursier du Coudray (c. 1712–1794) was an influential, pioneering midwife. In 1759 the king commissioned her to teach midwifery to rural women to reduce infant mortality. Between 1760 to 1783, she traveled rural France, sharing her knowledge with women. During this time, she is estimated to have directly trained 4,000 students. Du Coudray invented the first lifesize obstetrical mannequin, called “The Machine”. Various strings and straps serve to simulate the process of childbirth. The head of the infant mannequin has a shaped nose, stitched ears, hair drawn with ink, and an open mouth, with tongue.
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