James Edward Smith, Edinburgh, to James Smith

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Ref No GB-110/JES/COR/19/29
Title James Edward Smith, Edinburgh, to James Smith
Letter date 6 Mar 1783
Author(s) Sir James Edward Smith 1759-1828
Number of Pages 10

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GB-110/JES/COR/19/29 from James Edward Smith, Edinburgh, to James Smith (6 March 1783)

Metadata for GB-110/JES/COR/19/29 from James Edward Smith, Edinburgh, to James Smith (6 March 1783) Close

Item data

Item Type: Document
From: Smith, Sir James Edward
Sent from: Edinburgh
To: Smith, James

Shall follow his mother's directions to not attend any funerals, though that danger small compared to "what every medical man must be often exposed to", believing that every day people are exposed to abundant sources of infection but their constitutions are "seldom in a state to receive it". In daily expectation of his medal [given by Dr John Hope for best Scottish herbarium]. Proposes to be in London next winter, and will go to Norwich first in June. Afraid last change in Ministry will renew the war. Does not think Scotland has enough spirit to be independent.
Has been confined with diarrhea but cured with castor oil and butter, and laudanum and rhubarb. His dissatisfaction at enquiries into the Theory and Practice of Physic; believes medicine is in "the most barbarous condition of any science, & only now emerging from the greatest darkness & absurdity"; practitioner commonly state that theory is nothing and practice everything; Cullen's and Browne's lessons; accounts of Medical Society debates put into newspapers, violently incensing the orthodox men, conflict between Brunonians and Cullenians. On his recommendation Dr Broussonet of Montpelier, [France], whom he was with at Carlisle, was unanimously elected an honorary member of the Medical Society; Broussonet has offered in return to gain Smith's admittance to French academies, will also gain Broussonet admittance to Natural History and Philosophical Societies. Sends his father copy of letter received from Lord Buchan on being admitted an honorary member of the Natural History Society.
Encloses seed of 'Alsa foetida', given by Dr Hope from only plant of the kind in Europe, in Edinburgh Botanic Garden, to be given to Mr Ives; also sending to Mr Jackson, [James] Crowe, and [Thomas] Woodward; history of the plant. Recently attended Assembly Ball.

Letter date: 6 Mar 1783
Languages: English
Prev Ref No: 19.72
Additional Information:
Note typeNote
Finding AidsDawson, W R (1934). "Catalogue of the manuscripts in the Library of The Linnean Society - Part I. The Smith papers: The correspondence and miscellaneous papers of Sir James Edward Smith", London: Linnean Society.
AdditionalJames Smith replied 13 Mar [1783]