Cullen

The Consultation Letters of Dr William Cullen (1710-1790) at the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh

 

[ID:1180] From: Mrs Ann(e) Waldie (Ormston) (Ann Ormston) / To: Dr William Cullen (Professor Cullen) / Regarding: Mrs Ann(e) Waldie (Ormston) (Ann Ormston) (Patient), Miss Mary Ormston (Polly) (Patient) / 2 December 1775 / (Incoming)

Letter from Ann Ormston regarding both her case and that of her younger sister Polly, after their visit to Cullen in Edinburgh. Ann also refers to her mother's herbal tea of Coltsfoot.

Facsimile

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Metadata

FieldData
DOC ID 1180
RCPE Catalogue Number CUL/1/2/281
Main Language English
Document Direction Incoming
Date2 December 1775
Annotation None
TypeAuthorial original
Enclosure(s) No enclosure(s)
Autopsy No
Recipe No
Regimen No
Letter of Introduction No
Case Note No
Summary Letter from Ann Ormston regarding both her case and that of her younger sister Polly, after their visit to Cullen in Edinburgh. Ann also refers to her mother's herbal tea of Coltsfoot.
Manuscript Incomplete? No
Evidence of Commercial Posting Yes

Case

Cases that this document belongs to:

Case ID Description Num Docs
[Case ID:502]
Case of Ann (Anne) Ormston who has had a long history of illhealth since suffering a 'scorbutic ulcer' when eighteen.
6
[Case ID:503]
Case of Miss Polly Ormston who has 'a tendency to consumption'.
2


People linked to this document

Person IDRole in documentPerson
[PERS ID:1451]AuthorMrs Ann(e) Waldie (Ann Ormston)
[PERS ID:1]AddresseeDr William Cullen (Professor Cullen)
[PERS ID:1451]PatientMrs Ann(e) Waldie (Ann Ormston)
[PERS ID:1501]PatientMiss Mary Ormston (Polly)
[PERS ID:1]Patient's Physician / Surgeon / ApothecaryDr William Cullen (Professor Cullen)
[PERS ID:1611]Patient's Relative / Spouse / FriendMrs Mary Ormston (Mary Goldsbrough)
[PERS ID:1451]Patient's Relative / Spouse / FriendMrs Ann(e) Waldie (Ann Ormston)
[PERS ID:1610]Patient's Relative / Spouse / FriendMr Jonathan Ormston

Places linked to this document

Role in document Specific Place Settlements / Areas Region Country Global Region Confidence
Place of Writing Newcastle upon Tyne North-East England Europe certain
Destination of Letter Edinburgh Edinburgh and East Scotland Europe certain
Mentioned / Other England Europe certain
Mentioned / Other Edinburgh Edinburgh and East Scotland Europe certain
Place of Handstamp Newcastle upon Tyne North-East England Europe certain

Normalized Text

[Page 1]


From Doctor Cullens kind desire to hear from me
& my own Wish, not to (to) return him my grateful Thanks
for his many Favours. I had intended much earlier
to have addressed him, but as it remained for some
time an Uncertainty whether we should winter in
the South, until that was fixed I thought it unne¬
cessary to intrude upon his various & important
Engagements -- When we left Edinburgh, it was our
Intention to follow his Advice, & visit the South of
England but we have been unfortunately prevented.
My dear Sister had got a violent Cold in the journey
which brought on a Cough, Hoarseness & pain in her
Side, in her Side ( ---------) & was so much averse to having a
Blister, particularly a perpetual one, that some time
was put of in vainly endeavouring to persuade her to
it, for the pain of keeping it open appeared so great
to her, & joined to her Apothecary's thinking that it
could not be kept open for a year, or two without
putting her to very great & frequent Uneasiness, that
she rather chose to have a Seaton ↑ in her side which has been cut
a Month, & runs a great deal -- We would have much
preferred her following Doctor Cullens Prescription, but
the Idea of it, distressed her so much, that in her weak
State we could not insist upon it, & as the Seaton was
more her Choice, She bore the pains of its cutting, & the
daily Uneasiness it occasions with great Fortitude &
Patience -- After the Seaton had been cut a few days
her pain in her Side & Cough still continuing, She was
bled, & her Blood was sizy -- She now has a return of
the Cough & pain in her Side, mostly every Night whether
She gets Cold or not, & upon the least Cold. It gives a
general Languor to her whole Frame, quickens her
Pulse
& brings on a Shortness of Breath, & ↑she↑ cannot bear
Exposure to the cold Air -- She was so much fatigued
with returning from Edinburgh, tho: we only travelled
about twenty Miles a day, & so weak when her Seaton
was cut, that she was like to faint, all the Day after



[Page 2]

that my Parents thought, that in her delicate State as the Season
was so far advanced that {illeg} (the fatigue) & Inconvenience of travelling
& being from home, would risque her Health more, than Stay¬
ing the Winter in this Climate, & as they could not accompa¬
ny her, they could not have her Seperated from them --
She gets asses Milk every Morning, & {illeg} (principally) lives upon
Milk, pudding or white Meats at Dinner -- She is cloathed
in Flannel next her Skin, & has found Benefit from it
She is still susceptible of Cold & is seldom able to go out {illeg} ( ------)
{illeg} ( -- ---) even in a Carriage with the Glasses up --- She is
so weak that when She has an uneasy Night, or does not
Sleep
well, She is quite faint &languid, & generally lies
long in Bed to rest herself or She is not able to sit up
all day, & is quite fatigued with dressing herself or any
little Exercise -- She has been frequently out of Order tho:
not quite exact to a Month -- She has no Spitting
with her Cough -- The Apothecary who attends her is
neither willing to bleed, nor blister her. He Says that if he
was to bleed, whenever that Uneasiness in her Side comes
on, it would soon weaken her Frame, & consequently
that tendor part so much, that what is now only slight
would be so violent as to occasion her to require bleeding
every Evening, that he thinks it right to bleed [,?] whenever
She has so much pain as materially to raise the Pulse &
affect the Frame. But if it be applied to, in Slight
Cases, it will soon become frequently necessary, & not
have the same Effect. Blistering he thinks would
only be a Temporary Relief as she could not bear the
pain of having it kept open, & upon the whole consi¬
dering her delicate Frame he seems to prefer the easier
Method of bleeding when her Complaints make it nec¬
cessary -- We have no Reason to doubt his Friendship
as he always been assiduous & attentive upon every
Occasion -- But cannot help being anxious, & wish to
know if in this Situation a Blister would be of Service
or what Method would be most advisable for her to follow
& request this kind Advice & direction. I should imagine
that it cannot be alone Weakness in herLungs, &
that this uneasiness which comes on every Night
must either be an Obstruction or


[Page 3]

Inflammation of the Lungs, & if a Blister would be likely
to remove it, so as to allow the part to have some time
to recover Strength it would be well tried. She has
once or twice had a shivering in the Evening, tho: very
slight, but I observed She had a worse Night after
& a great deal of Langour & Uneasiness in the Morning;
I only perceived this once -- We fear She grows rather
weaker
-- We wish to hear Doctor Cullens judgement
whether he thinks a Blister would remove this Unea¬
siness, we would do any thing that is likely, but
would not give her unnecessary pain, if we could
not hope it would be for her Good -- My Mamma wishes
to know whether Doctor ↑C↑ approves the Use of the Flowers
or Herbs of Coltsfoot
, as She sometimes drank Tea made
made of them -- As my Sister was not well enough to take a j[ourney]
to the South, I could not have been easy to have left her {illeg}
poorly as it would have distressed her, & any anxiety {illeg}
have more than counterballanced any advantage of {illeg}
of Climate -- Since I returned from Edinburgh I have {illeg}
the whole better, & have been daily out a Short wa{illeg}
or on Horseback, tho: I can bear little Exercise {illeg}
to ride further I am so much heated that I cannot sleep & so
fatigued that I have great pain in my Legs, & such Weariness
that I can scarce {illeg} ([cross?]) the Floor, & whenever I do [Stir?], it
brings on a violent Beating of my Heart & Head Ach, & it is
out of my Power to walk to any distance - When even I happen
to be over fatigued by sitting quite still for a few Days, my Weariness
goes of & I can walk about the House & take my usual Exer¬
cise seven or eight Miles in a Chaise or four [or?] five on Horseback.
But I am sorry to find that instead of being able to bear
↑more↑ Exercise I seem in that Respect to grow weaker, & I am sooner
fatigued than I was some Weeks since with the same Motion
& I sometimes fear that my small strength will entirely
fail
me & the I shall [certainly?] lose the Use of my Limbs -
And I [the?] rather wonder that my Weakness should in¬
crease, as I have not been so liable to catch Cold so far this Winter
& have both eat & slept well, till this Week past, when
by being very much out of Order, my Intermitting &
Susceptibility of Cold have returned, & with then the


[Page 4]

depression of Spirits, & involuntary starting & my various Nervous
Complaints
- I must own a fear that my Constitution will
never recover, & could have wished to have followed Dr. C-s
Advice in trying a milder Climate, for too likely in a Short
time every means will be ineffectual - And wish he would
kindly inform me, if he even knew a similar Instance -
This Weakness increasing upon me without and renewed
Cause, renders me uneasy -- (↑to↑) which my dear Sisters Illness
has much contributed --as I fear she is in a dangerous way -


I have never yet taken any Bitters but fear I shall be obliged
to try something, if my Intermitting continues, & should like
to know of some strong Bitters for that Purpose, tho: nothing
but Necessity should induce me to do what Dr. Cullen's judge¬
ment & my own Experience disapproves -- Was I not wri¬
ting to Doctor C- whose partial Friends [his?] claims my
heartfelt Gratitude, & will even be remembered with pride &
Pleasure, I should think it {illeg} Apologies necessary for so long
detaining his Attention, but I trust he will kindly excuse the
tediousness of distress, & favor me with as early an Answer as
suits his Convenience --. My Father & Sister join in every
good Wish to Doctor Cullen, to hear of his Health & Happiness
will even give real pleasure to his {illeg} (grateful) & much
obliged Friend.

A. Ormston
.
Newcastle December 2nd 755


Doctor Cullen
Edinburgh --
Single Sheet --


From Miss A
Ormston.
2d Decr. 1775

Diplomatic Text

[Page 1]


From Doctor Cullens kind desire to hear from me
& my own Wish, not to (to) return him my grateful Thanks
for his many Favours. I had intended much earlier
to have addressed him, but as it remained for some
time an Uncertainty whether we should winter in
the South, until that was fixed I thought it unne¬
cessary to intrude upon his various & important
Engagements -- When we left Edinburgh, it was our
Intention to follow his Advice, & visit the South of
England but we have been unfortunately prevented.
My dear Sister had got a violent Cold in the journey
which brought on a Cough, Hoarseness & pain in her
Side, in her Side ( ---------) & was so much averse to having a
Blister, particularly a perpetual one, that some time
was put of in vainly endeavouring to persuade her to
it, for the pain of keeping it open appeared so great
to her, & joined to her Apothecary's thinking that it
could not be kept open for a year, or two without
putting her to very great & frequent Uneasiness, that
she rather chose to have a Seaton ↑ in her side which has been cut
a Month, & runs a great deal -- We would have much
preferred her following Doctor Cullens Prescription, but
the Idea of it, distressed her so much, that in her weak
State we could not insist upon it, & as the Seaton was
more her Choice, She bore the pains of its cutting, & the
daily Uneasiness it occasions with great Fortitude &
Patience -- After the Seaton had been cut a few days
her pain in her Side & Cough still continuing, She was
bled, & her Blood was sizy -- She now has a return of
the Cough & pain in her Side, mostly every Night whether
She gets Cold or not, & upon the least Cold. It gives a
general Languor to her whole Frame, quickens her
Pulse
& brings on a Shortness of Breath, & ↑she↑ cannot bear
Exposure to the cold Air -- She was so much fatigued
with returning from Edinburgh, tho: we only travelled
about twenty Miles a day, & so weak when her Seaton
was cut, that she was like to faint, all the Day after



[Page 2]

that my Parents thought, that in her delicate State as the Season
was so far advanced that {illeg} (the fatigue) & Inconvenience of travelling
& being from home, would risque her Health more, than Stay¬
ing the Winter in this Climate, & as they could not accompa¬
ny her, they could not have her Seperated from them --
She gets asses Milk every Morning, & {illeg} (principally) lives upon
Milk, pudding or white Meats at Dinner -- She is cloathed
in Flannel next her Skin, & has found Benefit from it
She is still susceptible of Cold & is seldom able to go out {illeg} ( ------)
{illeg} ( -- ---) even in a Carriage with the Glasses up --- She is
so weak that when She has an uneasy Night, or does not
Sleep
well, She is quite faint &languid, & generally lies
long in Bed to rest herself or She is not able to sit up
all day, & is quite fatigued with dressing herself or any
little Exercise -- She has been frequently out of Order tho:
not quite exact to a Month -- She has no Spitting
with her Cough -- The Apothecary who attends her is
neither willing to bleed, nor blister her. He Says that if he
was to bleed, whenever that Uneasiness in her Side comes
on, it would soon weaken her Frame, & consequently
that tendor part so much, that what is now only slight
would be so violent as to occasion her to require bleeding
every Evening, that he thinks it right to bleed [,?] whenever
She has so much pain as materially to raise the Pulse &
affect the Frame. But if it be applied to, in Slight
Cases, it will soon become frequently necessary, & not
have the same Effect. Blistering he thinks would
only be a Temporary Relief as she could not bear the
pain of having it kept open, & upon the whole consi¬
dering her delicate Frame he seems to prefer the easier
Method of bleeding when her Complaints make it nec¬
cessary -- We have no Reason to doubt his Friendship
as he always been assiduous & attentive upon every
Occasion -- But cannot help being anxious, & wish to
know if in this Situation a Blister would be of Service
or what Method would be most advisable for her to follow
& request this kind Advice & direction. I should imagine
that it cannot be alone Weakness in herLungs, &
that this uneasiness which comes on every Night
must either be an Obstruction or


[Page 3]

Inflammation of the Lungs, & if a Blister would be likely
to remove it, so as to allow the part to have some time
to recover Strength it would be well tried. She has
once or twice had a shivering in the Evening, tho: very
slight, but I observed She had a worse Night after
& a great deal of Langour & Uneasiness in the Morning;
I only perceived this once -- We fear She grows rather
weaker
-- We wish to hear Doctor Cullens judgement
whether he thinks a Blister would remove this Unea¬
siness, we would do any thing that is likely, but
would not give her unnecessary pain, if we could
not hope it would be for her Good -- My Mamma wishes
to know whether Doctor ↑C↑ approves the Use of the Flowers
or Herbs of Coltsfoot
, as She sometimes drank Tea made
made of them -- As my Sister was not well enough to take a j[ourney]
to the South, I could not have been easy to have left her {illeg}
poorly as it would have distressed her, & any anxiety {illeg}
have more than counterballanced any advantage of {illeg}
of Climate -- Since I returned from Edinburgh I have {illeg}
the whole better, & have been daily out a Short wa{illeg}
or on Horseback, tho: I can bear little Exercise {illeg}
to ride further I am so much heated that I cannot sleep & so
fatigued that I have great pain in my Legs, & such Weariness
that I can scarce {illeg} ([cross?]) the Floor, & whenever I do [Stir?], it
brings on a violent Beating of my Heart & Head Ach, & it is
out of my Power to walk to any distance - When even I happen
to be over fatigued by sitting quite still for a few Days, my Weariness
goes of & I can walk about the House & take my usual Exer¬
cise seven or eight Miles in a Chaise or four [or?] five on Horseback.
But I am sorry to find that instead of being able to bear
↑more↑ Exercise I seem in that Respect to grow weaker, & I am sooner
fatigued than I was some Weeks since with the same Motion
& I sometimes fear that my small strength will entirely
fail
me & the I shall [certainly?] lose the Use of my Limbs -
And I [the?] rather wonder that my Weakness should in¬
crease, as I have not been so liable to catch Cold so far this Winter
& have both eat & slept well, till this Week past, when
by being very much out of Order, my Intermitting &
Susceptibility of Cold have returned, & with then the


[Page 4]

depression of Spirits, & involuntary starting & my various Nervous
Complaints
- I must own a fear that my Constitution will
never recover, & could have wished to have followed Dr. C-s
Advice in trying a milder Climate, for too likely in a Short
time every means will be ineffectual - And wish he would
kindly inform me, if he even knew a similar Instance -
This Weakness increasing upon me without and renewed
Cause, renders me uneasy -- (↑to↑) which my dear Sisters Illness
has much contributed --as I fear she is in a dangerous way -


I have never yet taken any Bitters but fear I shall be obliged
to try something, if my Intermitting continues, & should like
to know of some strong Bitters for that Purpose, tho: nothing
but Necessity should induce me to do what Dr. Cullen's judge¬
ment & my own Experience disapproves -- Was I not wri¬
ting to Doctor C- whose partial Friends [his?] claims my
heartfelt Gratitude, & will even be remembered with pride &
Pleasure, I should think it {illeg} Apologies necessary for so long
detaining his Attention, but I trust he will kindly excuse the
tediousness of distress, & favor me with as early an Answer as
suits his Convenience --. My Father & Sister join in every
good Wish to Doctor Cullen, to hear of his Health & Happiness
will even give real pleasure to his {illeg} (grateful) & much
obliged Friend.

A. Ormston
.
NCastle December 2nd 755


Doctor Cullen
Edinburgh --
Single Sheet --


From Miss A
Ormston.
2d Decr. 1775

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