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Whilst I thank Professor Black for his fascinating account of the
medical history of Soho, I feel that no historical account of the district
can be complete without mention of John Snow, a legendary figure in public
health, epidemiology and anaesthesia.
Snow bravely removed the pump handle from a water well in the heart
of Soho, thus terminating an outbreak of cholera at a time when the
disease was thought to be carried by the "miasma". He also gave an ether
anaesthetic to Queen Victoria, thus introducing the concept of obstetric
pain relief and heralding the widespread introduction of anaesthetics.
John Snow is commemorated in the pub bearing his name, in Broadwick