Thomas Glass (painting)

Ownership/credit: Conserved with support from The Pilgrim Trust, Aurelius Charitable Trust, Finnis Scott Foundation, The Leche Trust, RAMM Development Trust and Friends of RAMM.

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Dr Thomas Glass (1709-86) was a physician in Exeter during the 1700s. He first began practicing medicine in Tiverton, before joining the newly opened Devon and Exeter Hospital in 1743, where he worked for the rest of his career.

Glass was among several Exeter physicians who were early advocates for the use of variolation to inoculate against smallpox. However, as with many new medical practices, it was initially viewed with suspicion by some Exeter residents. Often, physicians would have to inoculate their patients under the cover of darkness to avoid the stigma.

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