Punch,  3 (1842), 158.

Mr Muff's Introductory Discourse to the Medical Students  [1/3]



Short Fiction, Satire, Serial


Medical Practitioners, Education, Lecturing, Disease

    Continues story of Joseph Muff [see PU1/2/19/1]. Begins with a description of Dr Wurzel's lecture to medical students in which the lecturer insisted that medicine was a 'harassing profession' and that he and his colleagues were actuated 'solely by love of their noble calling'. Describes Joseph Muff's address to the same students. Muff asks students to forget everything Wurzel has said and offers them what he considers to be the knowledge needed to pass the examinations of the Apothecaries Hall and medical colleges. This knowledge includes very little relating to the technical aspects of medicine. Rather, Muff encourages his students to adopt a 'grave demeanour', 'to learn the most abstruse names of the most uncommon diseases; by the display of which you will flabbergaster other practitioners', to 'leave vulgar, common-place affairs, like measles, hooping-cough, croup, and colic, to monthly nurses and small apothecaries', to depreciate the efforts of 'brother practitioners'.

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