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Edward Jenner (1749-1823), Surgeon; discoverer of vaccination

Sitter in 11 portraits
A West Country surgeon, Jenner discovered vaccination against smallpox after testing the country lore that dairymaids, exposed to the mild cowpox virus, did not contract the killer disease. He published his findings in 1798, but it took ten years for the government to accept his discovery. Jenner campaigned vigorously, even encouraging the fashionable 'cowherd' poet Robert Bloomfield to write Good Tidings; or, News From the Farm (1804) to promote vaccination. By 1853 vaccination was compulsory in Britain and Jenner was posthumously considered a national hero.

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Edward Jenner

by James Northcote
oil on canvas, 1803
On display in Room 18 at the National Portrait Gallery
NPG 62


Men of Science Living in 1807-8

by Sir John Gilbert, and Frederick John Skill, and William Walker, and Elizabeth Walker (née Reynolds)
pencil and wash, 1858-1862
NPG 1075


Engraving after 'Men of Science Living in 1807-8'

by George Zobel, and William Walker
engraving, 1862
NPG 1075a


Edward Jenner

after John Miers
line and stipple engraving, late 18th or early 19th century
NPG D16374


Edward Jenner ('The cow pock - or - the wonderful effects of the new inoculation!')

by James Gillray, published by Hannah Humphrey
hand-coloured etching and soft-ground etching, published 12 June 1802
NPG D13037


Edward Jenner

by William Say, published by Thomas Palser, after James Northcote
mezzotint, published 20 August 1804
NPG D19467


Edward Jenner

by Maxim Gauci, printed and published by N. Chater & Co, printed and published by Washbourn & Son, after Samuel Manning Sr
lithograph, published 10 August 1823
NPG D36504


Edward Jenner

by James Henry Lynch, printed by Kell Brothers, published by Charles Heald Thomas, after Sir Thomas Lawrence
lithograph, circa 1827 (circa 1809)
NPG D21545


Edward Jenner

by Richard James Lane, printed by Charles Joseph Hullmandel, published by Henry Colburn, after Henry Corbould
lithograph, published March 1827
NPG D9093


Edward Jenner

published by Illustrated London News, after M.E. Paul
wood engraving, published 30 September 1865 (11 September 1865)
NPG D9007