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Clinical cases of Dr. Rutherford and Dr. Gregory, November 1793

Identifier: Coll-1326

Scope and Contents

An index at the beginning of this substantial volume of clinical case notes lists 28 women and 31 men with their symptoms and treatment recorded in manuscript notes over more than 600 pages. The manuscript offers much information on the methods of these two leading 18th century Scottish physicians.


  • Creation: 1793

Language of Materials


Conditions Governing Access

Open to bona fide researchers, but please contact repository for details in advance of visit.

Biographical / Historical

This manuscript volume records medical case notes of male and female patients of the Edinburgh physicians James Gregory (1753-1821) and Daniel Rutherford (1749-1819) in November 1793. Members of the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh volunteered on a monthly rotation to treat the impoverished sick at the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh and it seems likely that this is a record of clinical cases from the Infirmary.

In 1790 the physician James Gregory had been appointed joint Professor of the Practice of Physic at Edinburgh University, augmenting the ageing William Cullen (1710-1790). On the death of Cullen soon afterwards, Gregory went on to hold the Chair alone for the rest of his life. He attacked the system of rotation of doctors to the Royal Infirmary on the grounds that patients were uncertain as to which physicians would treat them, and permanent medical staff were appointed eventually.

The physician Daniel Rutherford was appointed physician-in-ordinary to the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh in 1791. Rutherford was also considered to be one of the leading chemists of his generation. He was President of the Royal College of Physicians between December 1796 and December 1798.


1 manuscript volume

Physical Location


Immediate Source of Acquisition

Purchased October 2011. Accession no: E2011.42.

Related Materials

Within Special Collections, Edinburgh University Library, there are a number of other materials relating to (the younger) James Gregory - largely lecture notes taken down by others - at: Gen. 2119D; Gen. 788D; Gen. 691-693D; Gen. 552-553D; Dc.2.97; Dc.3.78-81; Dc.3.86; Dc.5.23; Dc.7.119; Dc.8.147-149; Dc.10.11/1-3; Dc.10.45; E92.91.

Also within Special Collections, Edinburgh University Library, there are items relating to Daniel Rutherford (again including materials taken down by others) at: Dc.5.10; Dc.7.117, ff. 45-118; Gen. 786D; and Dc.5.121. There is a diary of Rutherford's wife, Mrs. Harriet Rutherford, 1802-1808, at Gen. 787D.

Processing Information

Compiled by Graeme D. Eddie, Edinburgh University Library, Special Collections.

Clinical cases of Dr. Daniel Rutherford (1749-1819) and Dr. James Gregory (1753-1821), November 1793
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Repository Details

Part of the University of Edinburgh Library Heritage Collections Repository

Centre for Research Collections
University of Edinburgh Main Library
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Edinburgh EH8 9LJ Scotland
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