Punch,  44 (1863), 203.

A Patent Medicine for Small-Pox



Letter, Spoof


Quackery, Commerce, Medical Treatment, Vaccination, Disease, Health, Human Development, Crime, Government

    The letter-writer relates that he observed a 'large bill' in a shop selling James Morison's 'Quack Medicines' which asserted the 'FATAL CONSEQUENCES' of vaccination, and which linked the supporters of vaccination with avaricious and evil medical practitioners. The bill also listed the opponents of vaccination, who included a Dr Zimple, whom the narrator suspects is a yokel hailing from a place whose inhabitants believed that vaccination leads to 'horns sprouting on human heads'. Describes how the shopkeeper took the narrator to be one such 'zimpleton' or rustic fool and gave him a copy of the Hygeist. Asks whether the government will allow such shops to incite people to disobey the law and, 'to the destruction or disfigurement of their unhappy children', use Morison's pills instead of vaccination. Notes that this quack remedy will boost the undertakers' trade, owing to the recent outbreak of small-pox.

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