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Abernethy, John (1764-1831)

Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 0120 MSS.814-819, 6881, 6906, and 8337
Held at: Wellcome Library
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Full title: Abernethy, John (1764-1831)
Date(s): 1808-[1820]
Level of description: Collection (fonds)
Extent: 8 volumes
Name of creator(s): Abernethy | John | 1764-1831 | surgeon
Detailed catalogue: Click here to view repository detailed catalogue


Administrative/Biographical history:

John Abernethy was born in London in 1764 and attended Wolverhampton Grammar School. He trained in medicine at St. Bartholomew's Hospital and the London Hospital, being named Assistant Surgeon at St. Bartholomew's in 1787. From 1791 onwards he gave extremely popular lectures on anatomy, physiology and surgery which were the basis of modern medical training at St. Bartholomew's; indeed, his eminence in the medical profession of the time is due to these talents as an educator and presenter rather than to original research. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1796 and became full Surgeon to St. Bartholomew's in 1815. He resigned the latter post in 1827 and died in 1831.


Scope and content/abstract:

Notes taken from John Abernethy's lectures and a collection of correspondence and other papers relating to Abernethy, 1808-[1820].

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:

System of arrangement:

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: S.A.J. Moorat, Catalogue of Western Manuscripts on Medicine and Science in the Wellcome Historical Medical Library (London: Wellcome Institute for the History of Medicine, 1962-1973).

Archival Information

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

MSS.814-819, 6881 and 6906: Purchased 1911, 1928, 1932, 1956, 1992; presented 1931. Accession numbers: 26208, 56980, 58623, 89161, 303159, 348857, 348918. MS.8337 comprises material from a wide variety of sources: Purchased from Glendining, London, 1933, 1935, Sotheby's, London, 1922, 1930-1932, Glendining, London, 1932-1934, Puttick and Simpson, 1921, Stevens, London, 1929, 1931, 1932, and Mrs. Watson, Burnley, 1945, presumably once part of the Thomas Madden Stone autograph collection. Accession numbers: 67874, 65133, 91799, 67614, 56474, 74959, 56370, 68323, 6779, 67540, 67801, 64177, 67914, 72200, 345576.

Allied Materials

Related material:

In the Wellcome Library: Further notes of lectures by Abernethy are found as MS.5600 and MS.5606 in the Hunterian Society's papers. Abenethy appears in an administrative capacity in the minutes of the Medical Committee of the Royal Jennerian Society (MS.4304) and of the Lyceum Medicum Londinense (MS.MSL.140a-d). His signature can be found on various admission tickets, testimonials and attendance certificates (MSS.5945/2, 7274/1, 7286, 7545/78, 7847/1) and in the autograph collection of Catherine Hutton (MS.5270). Medical historical material on him can be found in the papers of Max Neuburger (MS.8289) and Charles Singer (PP/CJS/B.6/1/19).

Publication note:

Description Notes

Archivist's note:
Entry compiled by Sarah Drewery.
Sources: Oxford Dictionary of National Biography.

Rules or conventions:
Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions:
Aug 2008

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