1773 Primitive Physick

Dr. Daniel Newman discusses care with his surgeons mate as they examine his new 1733 book by Rev. John Wesley, “Primitive Physic”.

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Yes, the founder of the Methodist Church wrote a medical book.  His aim in writing this particular book was “to bring practical medical advice to workers and others who could not afford private doctors”.

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Rev. John Wesley (1703-1791) was not only the founder of Methodism, but also wrote widely in other areas of concern. Wesley realized that medicine was not available to all. His aim in Primitive Physic was to bring practical medical advice to workers and others who could not afford private doctors.  This book is 456 pages in length.



Dr Dan Newman reading up on smallpox care in Rev John Wesleys Primitive Physic at The Old Barracks
Gary Johanson: “As a Letterpress Printer and 18th century book collector, I will repost this link. Wow, could you imagine this book being hand-set in the native Caslon 337 OS /quaints & Figs, printed on genuine linen laid? I figure it would take me about three years to set, lock, print, collate into signatures, cut, and bind. Oh, and not on a Common Press, but on a 1965 Kluge! The price would average about $2000.00 per book, and would be worth every nickel!  This version is a steal with the binding alone!”

“The next time you are out reenacting a battle at an event with your friends, make sure that you are carrying Rev. John Wesley’s 1773 “Primitive Physic” book in your haversack.  A storm may blow up in the middle of the heat of battle and no one may notice.  There is a good chance that one or several of your friends may be struck and killed by lightening.  When this happens, quickly get you’re your Primitive Physic, turn to page 90, then go down to cure number 151 and following his instruction.  See the snippet below.  You may be able raise all of your friends back from the dead to life.”

Dr. Dan Newman sent me this photo of his book, Primitive Physic that I made for him. It is opened to Chap XXII to the section about “the Bite of the Mad Dog”.  The Rev. John Wesley first published this book in 1748.  My replica is of this same book published in 1773.  Not much changed between the two additions, except the first addition did not have Wesley’s name associated with it.  His name was added to the 1750 edition and continued through this one.
Wesley wrote this book to bring practical medical advice to workers and others who could not afford private doctors or for those who lived in remote locations and did not have a physician in their area.
Please let me know, if you would like to make you one of these medical books for you or as a gift.