Garth, Sir Samuel

(1661-1719)
   The "dispensary poet" was born and educated in the West Riding of Yorkshire. He studied at Peterhouse, Cambridge, and at Leyden in the Netherlands, qualifying as doctor in 1691. He settled in London and was elected a fellow of the College of Physicians in 1693. His "The Dispensary, a Poem"published in 1699, and which reached a tenth edition in 1741-describes the efforts to establish a dispensary where poor people could obtain advice and prescriptions from the best physicians. He was knighted (with the sword of Marlborough) by King George I on his accession and became physician in ordinary to the king and physician-general to the army. Some of his poems are included in Dryden's collections. He had a lucrative practice. He died after a brief illness and was buried beside his wife at Harrow. Some of his poems: "Claremont," "Death," "Designed for Tamerlane," "On Her Majesty's Statue," "On the King of Spain," "On the New Conspiracy, 1716," "To the Duke of Marlborough," "To the Lady Louisa Lenox," "To the Music-Meeting."
   Sources: Dictionary of National Biography. Electronic Edition 1.1. Oxford University Press, 1997. English Poetry: Author Search. Chadwyck-Healey Ltd., 1995 (http://www. lib.utexas.edu:8080/search/epoetry/author.html). The Columbia Granger's Index to Poetry. 11th ed. The Columbia Granger's World of Poetry, Columbia University Press, 2005 (http://www.columbiagrangers.org). The National Portrait Gallery (www.npg.org.uk). The Works of the British Poets V. 9 (Dryden and Garth). J. Sharpe, 1808.

British and Irish poets. A biographical dictionary. . 2015.

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