[Andrew Duncan, the elder, Scottish physician and Professor at Edinburgh University.] Autograph Letter Signed ('A Duncan Sen.') to 'Samuel Parks', i.e. the chemist Samuel Parkes, regarding the discourse he delivered at an award to Parkes.

Andrew Duncan, the elder (1744-1828), Scottish physician and Professor at Edinburgh University, joint founder of the Royal Society of Edinburgh [Samuel Parkes (1761-1825), eminent chemist]
Publication details: 
Adams Square [Edinburgh]; 29 August 1825.
SKU: 21695

For the recipient Samuel Parks, internationally-renowned chemist and member of twenty-one learned societies, see his entry in the Oxford DNB, which explains his presence in Edinburgh at the time of the letter by explaining that it was during a visit to the city in June 1825 that Parkes 'was attacked by a painful disorder, which proved fatal'. 1p, 4to. Bifolium. In fair condition, lightly aged, with thin strip of paper from mount adhering to reverse of second leaf, which is addressed by Duncan to 'Samuel Parks [sic] Esqr | 59 Lothian Street'. Duncan writes that he has 'searched, but in vain, for a printed copy of the discourse which I delivered to the Horticultural Society when their gold medal was awarded to you'. (Parkes's essay on the advantages of employing common salt in gardening obtained the annual Gold Medal of the Horticultural Society of Scotland in 1819.) He would however 'fain hope, that Mr Neil, upon further search, may yet be able to find a copy for you.' Meanwhile Duncan is sending 'the No of our Memor[andu]m, which contains your paper on Salt together with my discourses for three different years'. From the distinguished autograph collection of the psychiatrist Richard Alfred Hunter (1923-1981), whose collection of 7000 works relating to psychiatry is now in Cambridge University Library. Hunter and his mother Ida Macalpine had a particular interest in the illness of King George III, and their book 'George III and the Mad Business' (1969) suggested the diagnosis of porphyria popularised by Alan Bennett in his play 'The Madness of George III'.