John Patch Senior (1691-1746) was a surgeon in Exeter in the early 1700s. He worked as senior surgeon at the newly opened Exeter and Devon Hospital in Southernhay. His son, John Patch Junior, was also a surgeon and worked alongside him at the hospital, being appointed at the tender age of 18.
In this portrait Patch is shown with a preserved specimen of a human arm. In the 18th century specimens like this one played an important role in how surgeons learnt their trade.
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