|Description||Pearson was born in Coney Street, York on 3 January 1758. He was apprenticed at the age of sixteen to a surgeon in Morpeth, Northumberland, from where he moved, in June 1777, to Leeds. There he lived for three years at the home of William Hey, the eminent surgeon to the Leeds Infirmary, whose biography he later wrote. Pearson travelled to London in 1780 and entered as a student at St George's Hospital to work under John Hunter. He appears to have been granted the diploma of the Company of Surgeons on 4 October 1781, when he was found qualified to act as surgeon to a regiment. In the same year he became house surgeon to the Lock Hospital and was appointed surgeon there in 1782, a post he held until 1818. He was also made surgeon, about this time, to the Public Dispensary, then newly founded, in Carey Street, an office which he resigned in 1809. He was elected a fellow of the Royal Society on 24 March 1803, and he afterwards became a fellow of the Linnean Society. In 1820 he was made an honorary member of the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, and he also became a member of the Royal Medical Society of Edinburgh. |
Pearson appears to have been a careful surgeon with a strong scientific bias. His writings, however, are neither numerous nor important. He wrote Principles of Surgery (part 1, 1788; the second part was never published). The principles are drawn up in a concise and aphoristical form for the use of students attending Pearson's lectures on surgery. His 'Plain and Rational Account of the Nature … of Animal Magnetism' was published in 1790, 'Practical Observations on Cancerous Complaints' in 1793, 'Some account of the two mummies of the Egyptian ibis' in the Philosophical Transactions, of 1805 (part 1, 264, and plates), and Life of William Hey in 1822. Pearson died on 12 May 1826.
[Source: Dictionary of National Biography]
Contents: Medical casebook, 1790-1817