Lives of the fellows

Edmund Smith

b.c.1600 d.c.15 February 1653/4
AB Cantab(1617/8) AM(1621) LRCP(1626/7) MD Cantab(1627) FRCP(1632)

Edmund Smith, MD, was born in London, and educated at Caius college, Cambridge, of which house he was matriculated a pensioner in December, 1613. He proceeded AB 1617-8, AM 1621; and on the 3rd February, 1626-7, was admitted a Licentiate of the College of Physicians, with the promise of being admitted a Candidate without further examination, when he had taken his doctor’s degree at Cambridge. This he did in 1627, and on the 10th December, 1628, was admitted a Candidate of the College, and a Fellow on the 25th June, 1632. He was Censor in 1638, 1639, 1641, 1650, 1651, 1652, 1653; was appointed an Elect, 25th June, 1650; and died of pleurisy at his house in Shoe-lane, on or about the 15th February, 1653-4, aged fifty-four; surviving for a fortnight only the opening of the Harveian Museum, of which he had been one of the most active promoters and supervisors; and to whom the munificent founder did due honour in the inscription he caused to be inscribed on the building: “Suasu et curâ Franc. Prujeani Præsidis et Edmundi Smith Elect: inchoata, et perfecta est hæc fabrica.” Dr Smith left to the College 20l, which was paid on the 14th June, 1654.(1)

William Munk

[(1) Dr Hamey represents him as an amiable, estimable, and learned physician. He says: “Verè dignus Rege medicus; ad quem identidem transcurrisse, et afflicto Carolo toties fortunas suas vitamque postposuisse in confesso est: non minus dignus Collegio Socius, cujus commodis et honori juxta cum fidelissimis semper invigilavit, et cum Prujeano, præ cæteris eminuit in Harvæi promovendâ, augendâ atque adornandâ erga nos munificentiâ. Moribus præterea verè niveis adversus omnes Socios; seniores colens eâ reverentiâ, quâ se aliquando senior cuperet a junioribus haberi; juniorum autem famæ ita favens, ut semper meminisset tyrocinii sui; cujus ætatis quorundam invidiam ut olim senserat gravem, ita nunc omnem viro liberali indignam esse et turpem censebat.” * * * “Virum toroso vegetoque corpore, frugali vitâ, annos quatuor admodum, et quinquaginta natum, facieque et cæsarie multo pauciores præferentem, tam ex improviso, simul et semel fatiscere! Anhelosus certè citra noxam pro aeris vicibus, din fuerat sed hoc Februario nubilo præter solitum cælo, repentè factus est asthmaticus; ac irruente unà ferino catarrho confestim via spiritus præclusa est et cordis flammula extincta oleo alioqui et ellychnio abunde suppetente. Hoc modo, vis fati inobservabilis abstulit eum nobis, cujus virtutes promereri, viresque promittere multo longiorem vitam videbantur. Nos autem (quod unum superabat) præstituto die, tristes funeris exequias, solenni habitu, selectisque sex, qui honoris ergo, lacinias emortualis straguli tesseris gentilitiis ornati, manibus suis sustinerent, ex ædibus nostri collegii ad sacellum Mercerum, prosecuti sumus et sine concione ad Christianissimam normam ritualis nostri, hodiè ferè antiquitati depositum cadaveris, terræ gremio, singulari desiderio, mandavimus, conscientiâ amicorum, quodvis aliud præconium superante.”]

(Volume I, page 205)

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