Serjeant Surgeon

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The Serjeant Surgeon is the senior surgeon in the Medical Household of the Royal Household of the Sovereign of the United Kingdom. The origin of the post dates back to 1253. Early serjeant surgeons were military surgeons who followed their king into battle.

John Arderne, later famous as the Father of Proctology, accompanied Edward III at the Battle of Crecy in 1346. But the title did not refer to a military rank; the word "serjeant" comes from the Latin "serviens" or "serving".

Over the years, other duties of the Serjeant Surgeon have included embalming of the royal corpse, oversight of torture to ensure the prisoner was not killed, and the screening of applicants to be touched by the king for the cure of the King's evil (tuberculous glands of the neck).

The first knighthood to be granted to a serjeant surgeon was in the reign of Henry VIII, to John Aylef, who was said to have cured the king of a fistula. The first serjeant surgeon to receive a peerage was Joseph Lister, the founder of antiseptic surgery, who was created Baron Lister of Lyme Regis in the County of Dorset by Queen Victoria.

Pre-twentieth century[edit]

List of serjeant surgeons from the beginning of the twentieth century[edit]

Honorary serjeant surgeons[edit]


  1. ^ "Claudius Amyand". The Twickenham Museum.
  2. ^ Stephen, Leslie; Lee, Sidney, eds. (1891). "Hawkins, Cæsar Henry" . Dictionary of National Biography. 25. London: Smith, Elder & Co. pp. 206–207.
  3. ^ a b c "No. 27289". The London Gazette. 26 February 1901. p. 1414.
  4. ^ "No. 27457". The London Gazette. 25 July 1902. p. 4738.
  5. ^ London Gazette 12 June 2010
  6. ^ "No. 27300". The London Gazette. 29 March 1901. p. 2194.