Nurse (3)


































Look at this french wet-nurse, presenting you proudly a breast bursting with milk!


The phenomenon was known as well in England:

"Women took in babies for money in Victorian Britain, and nursed them themselves or fed them with whatever was cheapest. This was known as baby-farming; poor care sometimes resulted in high infant death rates. Dr Naomi Baumslag noted legendary wet-nurse Judith Waterford:

"In 1831, on her 81st birthday, she could still produce breast milk. In her prime she unfailingly produced two quarts (four pints or 2.3 litres) of breast milk a day."

The English wet-nurse in Victorian England was most likely a single woman who previously gave birth to an illegitimate child, and was looking for work in a profession that glorified the single mother. English women tended to work within the home of her employer to take care of her charge, as well as working at hospitals that took in abandoned children. The wet-nurse’s own child would likely be sent out to nurse, normally brought up by the bottle, rather than being breastfed. Fildes argues that “In effect, wealthy parents frequently ‘bought’ the life of their infant for the life of another" (Wikipedia).