Institute of Historical Research



Margaret Pelling, Frances White

Year published


Citation Show another format:

'POWELL, Roger', Physicians and Irregular Medical Practitioners in London 1550-1640: Database (2004). URL: http://british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=17728 Date accessed: 26 November 2014.


(Min 3 characters)



NameRoger POWELL
Primary occupationmedical empiric (Quack)
Period of medical practice1579-1605
Other notesAccused 1589-95. Supported by EI and others. Reln of the Earl of Derby.

Censorial hearings

5 Dec 1589
EntryP was summoned.
Attitude of the accusedabsent
Action takenSummoned.
25 Sep 1590
EntryP, a quack, was summoned but did not appear. He was said to practise at markets.
Attitude of the accusedabsent
Action takenFailed to appear.
3 Sep 1591
EntryP appeared and was accused of having fixed bells on the walls of houses and having boasted in public about his cures and special experience. He was found to be unlearned and entirely illiterate, but to have had 'long and very remarkable' experience of medicine. He said he'd practised for a long time in the City and cured many suffering from dangerous diseases.
Attitude of the accusedconfessed
Action taken?
5 Nov 1591
EntryP was summoned.
Attitude of the accusedabsent
Action takenSummoned.
Verdictcase not completed
10 Jan 1595
EntryP brought a letter from Lord Herbert, sent by the Commissioners in the Queen's name. In it the Queen emphasized P's poverty and past success in medical diagnosis. He brought a supporting letter from Sir Charles Morisin, who claimed that P had cured him (for a large fee) of a swelling on the thigh when previous expensive treatment had failed. Dr Muffett was sceptical: 'Diseases are cured not by speech and letters, but by experience.'
Pressure applied by Collegeyes
Action takenTo be fined £20 & imprisoned, but let off if gave bond to abstain +
SentenceFined £20 and imprisoned unless gave bond to abstain
Number of crimes1

POWELL, Richard
POWELL, William