Cecil Symons (1921–87) was a physician and cardiologist at the Royal Free Hospital, London. He collected many fascinating artefacts which would have been used by physicians and for self-care in the home.
The Symons collection is housed in the Treasures Room at the RCP, in a space designed especially for it by RCP architect, Sir Denys Lasdun.
Although Dr Symons did not confine himself to one era – or even one country – his collection shows an enthusiasm for the Georgian period (1714–1837). Medicine was the focus of considerable attention during this rumbustious age, with vigorous cartoons and illustrations revealing much about medical practice – a rich source of information for Cecil.
Cecil died in 1987 and his wife, Jean, catalogued the collection with the help of Elisabeth Bennion. The display was arranged by Colin Lindley.
The collection, along with our current exhibition can be viewed Monday to Friday 9.00am to 5.00pm. Entry is free.