16 March 2018

Edward Jenner in Boulogne-sur-Mer, Pas-de-Calais (62)

As I'm always wary of saying anything on scientific issues – people tend to be swift to add a comment on any mistake I make – I shall steal most of my material from Wikipedia, so any mistakes can be blamed on the anonymous contributors there. Edward Jenner (1749–1823) was an English physician and scientist who pioneered the smallpox vaccine. The words 'vaccine' and 'vaccination' stem from Variolae vaccinae, the expression Jenner used for cowpox: in 1796 he described the protective effect of cowpox against smallpox. Jenner is often called the father of immunology, and his work is said to have 'saved more lives than the work of any other human: in his time smallpox killed around ten per cent of the population, reaching up to twenty percent in towns and cities where infection spread more easily. His publications include: An Inquiry into the Causes and Effects of the Variolæ Vaccinæ (1798); Further Observations on the Variolæ Vaccinæ, or Cow-Pox (1799); A Continuation of Facts and Observations relative to the Variolæ Vaccinæ (1800); The Origin of the Vaccine Inoculation (1801). Like several statues, this one is at the side of the Haute-Ville in Boulogne-sur-Mer.

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