MARIA PLATT-EVANS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY MARIA PLATT-EVANS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
John Quekett (1815-61), English microscopist and histologist. Quekett was born in Langport, Somerset and educated at home. By the age of 16 he had built his own microscope and was lecturing on microscopic subjects. He was apprenticed to a local surgeon, then to his brother Edwin, before entering King's College London and the London Hospital medical school. He formed an extensive collection of over 2500 prepared slides of animal and plant cells in health and disease, later purchased by the Royal College of Surgeons where he succeeded Richard Owen as conservator of the Hunterian Museum. Quekett published many books of instruction in the use of the microscope, influencing many later generations of histologists and anatomists. In 1839 he founded the Royal Microscopical Society and was later elected Fellow of the Linnean Society and the Royal Society.
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