Lives of the fellows

Edward Clapton

b.28 April 1830 d.28 September 1909

Edward Clapton was born at Stamford, the son of Jeremiah Clapton, a mayor of the borough and its Conservative agent. He was educated at Stamford Grammar School and then apprenticed to a local doctor. He completed his medical training at St. Thomas’s Hospital, qualifying in 1853. In 1860 he was elected to the staff as assistant physician and lecturer on botany, and a year later began to lecture on materia medica and therapeutics. His promotion to full physician took place in 1870, but he resigned after four years of office on account of ill health. His remaining years were given over to evangelical work and study of the Bible. He made a comprehensive collection of the precious stones mentioned in the latter, investigating both their chemical composition and their possible symbolism; his results were published in 1878 under the title The Precious Stones of the Bible, by a Physician. He was an indefatigable traveller and systematically visited all the principal spas of Europe. He journeyed to Cos to identify the plane tree in whose shade Hippocrates had lectured and, confident of his success, presented two branches to the Royal College of Surgeons on his return. He married Mary, daughter of John S. M. Churchill, the medical publisher.

G H Brown

[Lancet, 1909; B.M.J., 1909; Plarr, i, 227]

(Volume IV, page 178)

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