Ferdinando Mendez, MD, was a Portugese Jew. When Catherine of Braganza was on her way to England to become the wife of Charles II, she was attacked during her journey through New Castile with erysipelas, and Mendez, who was physician to king John IV of Portugal, was sent to her assistance. He gained such favour in the sight of the princess, that she made him a member of her household, and desired him to accompany her to England and settle here.(1) Dr Mendez reached this country 25th October, 1669, and was appointed physician in ordinary to the queen. He had a daughter, Catherine, born about 1678 in the royal palace of Somerset house, and the queen, from whom she was named, was pleased to be her godmother.(2) Dr Mendez was one of the many physicians in regular attendance on Charles II in his last illness. He was created a Fellow of the College of Physicians by the charter of king James II, and was admitted as such 12th April, 1687. He died in 1725.
[(1) Sketches of Anglo-Jewish History, by James Pacciotto. 8vo. Lond. 1875, p.44.
(2) Gent. Mag. for 1812, vol. lxxxii, part i, p.22 et seq.]
(Volume I, page 471)
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