AIM25 : Click here to go back to the AIM25 homepage
Archives in London and the M25 area

Royal College of Physicians, Edinburgh

Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 0120 MSS.8384-8394
Held at: Wellcome Library
  Click here to find out how to view this collection at ›
Full title: Royal College of Physicians, Edinburgh
Date(s): c 1925
Level of description: Collection (fonds)
Extent: 11 vols
Name of creator(s): Royal College of Physicians | Edinburgh
Detailed catalogue: Click here to view repository detailed catalogue


Administrative/Biographical history:

In the seventeenth century, Edinburgh physicians began to hold meetings in their own homes to discuss the regulation of medical practice and the ways in which standards in medicine could be improved.

Sir Robert Sibbald, an eminent physician and noted historian, was a member of this group. He had the opportunity to petition King Charles II, who granted the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh its Royal Charter in 1681. Thus, Sir Robert is generally accepted to be the founder of the College. The founding Fellows of the College were concerned not only with the advancement of medicine as a reputable science, but also with alleviating the miseries of the City's poor and needy.

For more than 300 years, the College has remained independent of control by government, and its mission today lies close to the ideals of its founders 'to promote the highest standards in internal medicine' not only in Edinburgh where it was founded and has developed, but wherever its Fellows, Collegiate members and Members practise. The College acts in an advisory capacity to government and other organisations on many aspects of health and welfare and medical education. It was instrumental in founding the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh in 1729 and, over the years, has influenced the development of medical schools in North America, Australasia, Asia and Africa.

The Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh now has over 10,000 Fellows and Members and maintains strong links with many overseas countries, where more than half of them live and practise medicine. (Copied from


Scope and content/abstract:

Transcribed minute books of the Royal College of Physicians, Edinburgh, 1682-1861.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:

System of arrangement:

By volume

Conditions governing access:

The papers are available subject to the usual conditions of access to Archives and Manuscripts material, after the completion of a Reader's Undertaking.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Photocopies/photographs/microfilm are supplied for private research only at the Archivist's discretion. Please note that material may be unsuitable for copying on conservation grounds, and that photographs cannot be photocopied in any circumstances. Readers are restricted to 100 photocopies in twelve months. Researchers who wish to publish material must seek copyright permission from the copyright owner.

Finding aids:

Described in Richard Aspin and Christopher Hilton's typescript supplement to S.A.J Moorat's Catalogue of Western Manuscripts

Archival Information

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

Presented by the Royal College of Physicians, Edinburgh, April 1963.

Allied Materials

Related material:

Publication note:

Description Notes

Archivist's note:
Copied from the Wellcome Library catalogue by Sarah Drewery.

Rules or conventions:
In compliance with ISAD (G): General International Standard Archival Description - 2nd Edition (1999); UNESCO Thesaurus, December 2001; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions:
Jan 2009

Related Subject Search

* To search for other records with similar subjects, tick any subjects above then click "Run New Search"

Related Corporate Name Search

* To search for other records with similar names, tick any names above then click "Run New Search"