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The Great InoculatorThe Untold Story of Daniel Sutton and his Medical Revolution$
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Gavin Weightman

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780300241440

Published to Yale Scholarship Online: January 2021

DOI: 10.12987/yale/9780300241440.001.0001

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Saving the Nation

Saving the Nation

(p.104) 12 Saving the Nation
The Great Inoculator

Gavin Weightman

Yale University Press

This chapter highlights how, in 1774, English physician John Haygarth had been involved in the creation of a Smallpox Society in Chester, which aimed to carry out some plan to make inoculation effective through isolation of the infected for a period of time. The society devised what Haygarth called the 'Rules of Prevention'. They were intended not only to minimise contact between the infected and the vulnerable, but also to make sure the infection was not lingering on anything, from clothes to a letter sealed by someone with smallpox. In his ambition to rid the whole nation of smallpox, Haygarth took for granted that the safety and effectiveness of Suttonian inoculation had been demonstrated countless times. Its value was only limited by the political and administrative problems of making it universal. Haygarth maked no mention of Daniel Sutton or his family, as if what they had achieved was too familiar to be remarked upon. Daniel Sutton did not fail to notice that his celebrity was on the wane.

Keywords:   John Haygarth, Smallpox Society, inoculation, isolation, smallpox, Suttonian inoculation, Daniel Sutton

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