Baby veils

You may have heard about babies being 'born with a veil' and wondered what that means.

Baby veils

Sometimes, though not often, a thin foetal membrane (the amniotic sac) envelops or partly covers the baby at birth, especially in premature births. This membrane, called a caul, is harmless and easily removed by the midwife.

Since the baby born in a caul has not drawn its first breath, there is no immediate danger of suffocation or drowning. Indeed, in medieval Europe, being born in a caul was a sign of good luck, especially against drowning. It is mentioned a couple of times in Grimms' Fairy Tales: The Devil with the Three Golden Hairs and Hans in luck.

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