Edward Mayhew on dogs

In our collection of watercolours by Edward Mayhew there is only one featuring dogs. The top image is captioned ‘Dog with retracted eye – near the termination(?) of  distemper’ and the bottom ‘The lasting effect left by nitrate of silver when applied to an ulcer on the eye of the dog.’ The fact that there […]

200 year anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo: Unique records to be digitised

At our recent Summer Reception, guest speaker Kirsten Rausing announced £387,275 in funding from The ALBORADA Trust for a five year project to catalogue, properly store and digitise priority pieces from our historic collections and make them available for free online. Amongst the documents we plan to digitise is a manuscript ledger recording the work […]

Window containing the Coats of Arms in Belgrave Square

The RCVS stained glass

The addition of the Coat of Arms of the University of Nottingham to the display of stained glass in the reception at Belgravia House, the RCVS HQ, has awakened interest in the history of the glass in this display and elsewhere in the building.  As a result I spent several days pouring over 170 years of […]

Team of the Uganda Tranport

Robert Stordy and the Uganda Transport

In 1898 Robert Stordy, who was working for the Colonial Veterinary Service in British East Africa, embarked on a 400 mile journey from Nairobi to Kampala.   This journey was the first made by the Uganda Transport which had been set up to convey the effects, equipment and rations of troops serving in Uganda. Stordy wrote […]

Gift Horse by Hans Haacke, Trafalgar Square

A Gift Horse

  Sitting proudly on top of the fourth plinth in Trafalgar Square currently is ‘Gift Horse’ by Hans Haacke. The sculpture is based on illustrations from George Stubb’s Anatomy of the horse and so feels strangely familiar to me – apart from the live share-price ticker tied to its foreleg. Looking at our catalogue I […]

Cavalry before Arras by Herbert Lake

Shining a light on veterinary artists

The Lightbox in Woking, is currently showing an exhibition describing the role of horse and mules in World War 1.  The Horse at War: 1914-18  has a wide ranging display of artwork both from the war itself as well as more recent works, most noticeably ‘Joey’ the life size puppet from the National Theatre’s stage production […]

A view beyond the Great Wall of China

George Fleming’s travels on horseback

In 1859 George Fleming  volunteered to serve as a veterinary officer on the expedition to North China.  Whilst there, in July 1861, he embarked on a journey of almost 700 miles from Tien-tsin, where he was stationed, to Mantchu Tartary.  Two years later he wrote an account of the journey which was published as Travels on horseback […]

Letter of 'protest' against John Lloyd's application

The 1881 list of ‘Existing Practitioners’

In the summer, with the help of our intern Josh, we were able to sort the bundles of applications for entry on the List of Existing Practitioners which were submitted to the RCVS in 1882. The List of Existing Practitioners came into being as a result of the Veterinary Surgeons Act 1881.  The introduction to the […]

Aloe Indica from The quarterly journal of veterinary science in India

Indian materia medica

In Volume 5 of The quarterly journal of veterinary science in India, published in 1887, there is a two part article by T J Symonds ‘Illustrations of Indian materia medica’. Thomas J Symonds (?-1892) graduated from the London Veterinary College in December 1870. He entered the Army Veterinary Department in March 1871 and  served in the Afghan War […]

Vincent Fox

A time for reflection: Lieutenant Vincent Fox

Last Friday the Royal College was delighted to accept a portrait of Lieutenant Vincent Fox from his great grand-nephew.   Vincent Fox was killed in action on the 26 August 1914: the first member of the RCVS to die during World War 1.   His obituary in the Veterinary Record 3 October 1914, simply read: Vincent Fox, MRCVS, […]