Category Archives: Medicine & Science

Was Melancholy THE English Malady of the 18th Century?

“Mine, you are to know, is a white Melancholy, or rather Leucocholy… which though it seldom laughs or dances, nor ever amounts to what one calls Joy or Pleasure, yet is a good easy sort of a state … But … Continue reading

Posted in Georgian Society, Medicine & Science, Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Some Georgian Medicine (from the archives)

Elizabeth Postlethwaite in 1777 (© Copyright National Portrait Gallery, London) A little while ago, rummaging in a secondhand bookshop as I often do, I found a small, locally-published book containing extracts from the correspondence of two Norfolk sisters, Elizabeth and … Continue reading

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The 18th-century Apothecary

Those of you who have read any of my Georgian murder-mystery books featuring Dr Adam Bascom will know that one of the important series characters is Peter Lassimer, an apothecary. I was therefore fascinated to find an article in a … Continue reading

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“Cunning Folk”: Witchcraft, Healing and Superstition

It’s easy to forget that “Cunning Folk” had been a normal part of society from the Middle Ages and continued right through until the start of the 20th century. They included men and women, some practising as healers, some as … Continue reading

Posted in Georgian Society, Medicine & Science | 9 Comments

The ‘Bluestockings’ and Society

Today the term ‘bluestocking’ is applied to women who do not conform to the supposed feminine stereotype. In the eighteenth century, it had not yet gained that automatic sneer and referred to any woman distinguished by learning and intelligence. So … Continue reading

Posted in Georgian Society, Medicine & Science

The Medical Free-for-All that was Georgian Britain

It’s easy to assume that the treatment options open to people in Georgian times were prescribed by income and social class. This is incorrect. Naturally, in such a laissez faire era, the richer you were, the more choices were open … Continue reading

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Forthergil’s Chymical Nervous Drops

Surely a Remedy Worth Having! One of the particular joys of reading through eighteenth-century newspapers is finding advertisements for various ‘quack’ remedies and patent medicines. This one, from The Norfolk Chronicle for 17th March, 1781, really wins the prize! What … Continue reading

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