Observations on the Cow-Pox.

London: Printed and sold by William Phillips… 1800

8vo, 2 leaves (title and dedication to Edward Jenner) + 43 pages. Stitched in the original blue wrappers (a little soiled, spine missing), uncut (fore-edge of three leaves a little ragged).

FIRST EDITION. The first large-scale trial of vaccination was published by Woodville in 1799 as the Report of a Series of Inoculations for the Variolae Vaccinae or Cow Pox. “Its case histories of two hundred vaccinations, most of which were subsequently tested by inoculation, did much to prove the efficacy of the new practice. However, the Report also cast the first doubts as to the merits of vaccination. Woodville noted that vaccination frequently produced smallpox-like eruptions which he believed might communicate smallpox. This undermined one of the principal advantages of the new practice over inoculation — patients did not have to be isolated. Woodville's observation sparked off a dispute between Woodville and Jenner. Jenner blamed Woodville’s results on contaminated vaccine: Woodville responded with his Observations on Cow-Pox (1800) arguing that hybridization between cowpox and smallpox was impossible. Thereafter the dispute fizzled out, unresolved… Woodville continued to promote vaccination through his practice at the Smallpox Hospital, and later briefly held a post as vaccinator to the Royal Jennerian Society, a charity offering free vaccination” (ODNB). LeFanu, p. 134 (dedications), 5[4].


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