Lady Mary and the First Inoculation

In the 18th century, Lady Mary Wortley Montagu was an aristocrat, courtier, brilliant beauty, intellectual, wife to the ambassador to the Ottoman Empire and a sufferer from smallpox. It was during her time in Constantinople that she witnessed a procedure that would alter the course of her life; inoculation. Having inoculated her children she brought the practice back to Britain where she inoculated the offspring of the high and mighty including the daughters of the royal family. Jo Willet, TV producer and author of The Pioneering Life of Mary Wortley Montagu, joins Dan to explore the fascinating life of the 18th Century ‘It Girl’ turned public health pioneer.

Over the weekend there was a mix up with two of our episodes. If you want to go back and listen to the brilliant Diarmaid Ferriter discussing Irish independence then please click here.


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