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Sir James Young Simpson, 1811 - 1870. Discoverer of chloroform

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Sir James Young Simpson, 1811 - 1870. Discoverer of chloroform About 1889

Not on display

  • Scottish Art
The seventh son of a West Lothian baker, Simpson rose to the peak of the medical profession. He became Professor of Midwifery at the age of twenty-eight and was acclaimed worldwide for his advances in obstetrics and gynaecology. Most importantly, he introduced chloroform as an anaesthetic in childbirth and surgery. The Church argued vigorously against its use, saying that pain during labour was pre-ordained but, after Queen Victoria experienced its benefits during the birth of her eighth child in 1853, it came into general use. This marble bust was commissioned by Simpson's son, who asked the sculptor to copy an original plaster by Patric Park

Glossary Open


Sculpted portrait consisting of the head and the top of the shoulders.



  • Acc. No. PG 426
  • Medium Marble
  • Size Height: 79.50 cm
  • Credit Presented by Sir W.G. Simpson 1889