It is almost a commonplace in medical history that the rise of male surgical authority eroded female influence in the domain of childbirth over the course of the eighteenth century. According to this narrative, male physicians introduced instruments like forceps into the birthing chamber while relegating midwives to the margins of obstetrical knowledge and practice. Does this claim hold water when we look at the material culture of childbirth? Drawing on both print and three-dimensional archives, Carlyle argues that both male and female authorities transformed childbirth in this period, through their many and often ingenious attempts to create new technologies that served practical and pedagogical functions in and beyond the birthing chamber. One such technology is the "phantom"—a device for imparting practical knowledge of birthing positions to students—which reveals the shifting grounds of gender and instrumental authority. Through this example, Carlyle suggests that the professionalization of midwifery was as much a debate about gender as about conflicting visions over the utility of instruments in the birthing milieu at a time of increased political and social pressure on the profession.