Lives of the fellows

John Peet

b.28 October 1818 d.18 January 1874
MD Aberd MRCS FRCP(1860)

John Peet joined the Bombay Medical Service in 1842, having qualified in the previous year. After a period in Sind, he became, in 1845, the first professor of anatomy and surgery at the newly-founded Grant Medical College in Bombay. In so far as he spent the greater part of his career at this institution, to him is due part of the credit for the high standard set in its initial years. He was absent on sick leave from 1852 to 1854 and, on his return, deputised for the principal for eighteen months. From 1856 to 1858, he enjoyed a partial respite, as an inspector of education, and was able to learn two vernacular languages and to visit Europe. In 1858, on Morehead’s retirement, he succeeded him permanently as principal of the College and professor of medicine. During the next seven years, until his own retirement, he strove with some success to maintain the College’s independence against the encroachments of the civil authorities. He was throughout a strong supporter of the Bombay Medical and Physical Society and held the offices of secretary, vice-president and president as well as contributing to its Transactions. Peet was the author of a textbook for Indian students, Principles and Practice of Medicine (1864), which was translated into three Indian languages. He was predominantly a practical man, with little taste for prolonged research but an aptitude for problems readily tackled. Conciliatory by nature, he was too easily persuaded in minor issues, although cautious to a degree in larger matters.

G H Brown

[B.M.J., 1874; Roll of I.M.S., 453]

(Volume IV, page 130)

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