Royal College of Surgeons, Edinburgh, 1831

Discussion in 'Medical' started by kernowmaid, Jan 14, 2020.

  1. kernowmaid

    kernowmaid Well-Known Member

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    I have a Robert ELLIOT, Surgeon & Medical Practitioner, Licentiate of the Royal College of Surgeons, Edinburgh.
    In the Provincial Medical Directory of 1850 he appears with the date of 1831 - I assume the year he qualified? (He was born about 1809).

    I would like to find anything about his training/studies/qualifications.
    And whether he had to fund it himself - how much would it have cost? (The family does not appear to be particularly well off: father a Cattle Dealer, but Robert's the younger son, the 5th of 7 surviving children).

    Any ideas where I should be looking?

    Jane
     
  2. Sandiep

    Sandiep Successfully Supports Searches!

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    https://archiveandlibrary.rcsed.ac.uk/surgeons-database
    you could try this site but must admit not sure his name is there but no real information but I suppose you could try them
     
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  3. kernowmaid

    kernowmaid Well-Known Member

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    Thanks, Sandie.
    Well, his name is there, but no new information.
    I shall have to make further enquiries ... maybe they've got something hidden in the archives. A photo would be nice (she said hopefully!)

    Jane
     
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  4. kernowmaid

    kernowmaid Well-Known Member

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    UPDATE:

    Wow! I rang the RCS Ed and got straight through to the Librarian, Steven Kerr. What a refreshing contact: a lovely, helpful man, and no mention of charging for information.
    It turns out that the College keeps full records of the Fellowships but not of the Licentiates. So no further personal info for me, but within the week I had a copy of the 1832 Regulations.
    Now I know what Robert's studies involved (prior knowledge of Latin, Greek, Mathematics ... and at least a 3-year course).

    Mr Kerr asked that I send him what I know about Robert, to update their records. Which I did - and a precis of what I sent is now online.:)
    How nice to think that "my" Robert is now properly recorded as belonging to the RCS.

    Thanks Sandiep - I owe you one! :)

    Jane
     
  5. Grizel

    Grizel Well-Known Member

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    Edinburgh University's Historical Alumni database lists a Robert Elliot who began his medical studies in 1822, becoming a DM( Dr of Medicine?) in 1827. If it is your chap I guess he would then go on to do surgical training.
    They also list a Robert Elliott (note spelling) also 1822- and a Robert Jas Elliot1819- a Rob K Elliot 1823- as well as a few other Robert Elliots.
    On reflection I'm not sure if 1822 is too early for your Robt to have started university though. Nowadays a student could start at 17. Your Robt would only be 13 in 1822.....

    I think it is most likely he did all his training in Edinburgh, but it is also possible that he could have studied in Glasgow, St Andrews or Aberdeen.

    But reading your info from RCS maybe he went straight from school to the surgical course!
     
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2020
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  6. Grizel

    Grizel Well-Known Member

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    From the Edinburgh Medical and Sugical Journal 1831
    Surgical Examinations
    Surgeons' Hall Edinburgh 16 May 1831
    a Robert Elliot was examined and found fully qualified to practise the arts of Anatomy, Surgery and Pharmacy.
     
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  7. kernowmaid

    kernowmaid Well-Known Member

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    Thank you for that Grizel. I think it was my Robert who qualified in May 1831.

    I'm not sure whether the Royal College of Surgeons was attached to the University?

    According to Mr Kerr, examining as a Licentiate was a cheaper way of qualifying. (i e Cheaper than a Fellowship).
    And the Regulations state that he didn't need to enrol on the course in Edinburgh - over the 3/4 year period, the sessions could be at any "Edinburgh approved" location, with an "approved" medical practitioner.
    I'm guessing that he learned as he worked, probably in Northumberland, attending Edinburgh only to take the exams.

    Gives a whole new meaning to "work experience":D

    Jane
     
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2020
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  8. Grizel

    Grizel Well-Known Member

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    Yes, imagine being operated on by a trainee! Although I suppose that does still happen today in a way.
    Sounds as though it was separate from the university doesn't it. And I seem to remember that some barbers were also surgeons.

    Doing some googling it seems that nowadays a surgeon must first have a medical degree before becoming a surgeon but until the mid 19th century they would just be apprenticed to a surgeon without needing previous medical training.
     
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2020
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