Punch,  1 (1841), 53.

The State Doctor—A Bit of a Farce



Drama, Satire; Song, Satire


Medical Practitioners, Medical Treatment, Charlatanry, Government, Pharmaceuticals, Politics, Health

    The dramatis personae include 'Rhubarb Pill' a 'travelling doctor' played by the Prime Minister Robert Peel. Italicised parts of Pill's lines are apparently appropriated from his political speeches. Pill boasts that as the 'professor of sophistry and doctorer of laws' he has come amongst his 'friends and neighbours' with 'old and infallible remedies and restoratives'. Despite the opposition of the 'Cabinet of Physicians', he promises to 'restore the constitution', free of charge. The 'Countryman', played by John Bull, asks Pill to cure his wife. Pill insists that he must direct his own 'administration' and see Lord John Russell's '"purge" thrown out of the window'. Concludes with Pill singing a song describing himself as a 'political quack' and his attempts to restore to health a nation rendered 'rather sickly' by Russell.

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