The Sea-Man's Vade Mecum, 1707.

The Duty of the Clerk, Pilot, Mate, Surgeon and Sea-men of a Ship, according to the Custom of France.

The Duty of the Surgeon.

In every Ship, even in the Fishing-Ships, making long Voyages, there shall be one or two Surgeons, according to the Circumstances of the Voyages and Number of the Persons.

2. None shall be received as Surgeons on board of Ships, till they have been examined and found capable by two Master Surgeons, who shall give their Certificates.

3. The Owners shall be obliged to provide the Surgeons Chest well stored with Drugs, Ointments, Medicaments, and other things nocessary [sic] for treating Sick Persons during the Voyage; and the Surgeon shall provide the Instruments of his Profession.

4. The Chest shall be visited by the most Ancient Master Surgeon of the Place, and by the most Ancient Apothecary, provided it be not the same that furnished the Drugs.

5. The Surgeons shall be obliged to get their Chest visited, at least 3 Days before the Departure; and the Master Surgeon and Apothecary, to do it within four and twenty Hours after they are thereto required, on Pain of thirty Livres Fine, and the Damages of Demurage.

6. No Master shall receive any Person to serve on board his Ship as Surgeon, without producing a Copy of the Attestations of his Capacity, and of the Condition of his Chest in due Form, under Pain of fifty Livres Fine.

7. We enjoin the Surgeon of Ship, in case they discover and contagious Distemper, to acquaint forthwith the Master, that he may take his Measures accordingly.

8. They shall exact nor receive nothing of the Marriners sick or wounded in the Service of the Ship, under Pain of Restitution, and an Arbitrary Fine.

9. The Surgeon not to leave the Vessel in which he is engaged, before the Voyage is accomplish'd, under Pain of the Loss of his VVages, or being fined in one hundred Livres, and of paying the like Sum for Damages to the Master.

[pp 137-139]

Transcribed by Lars Bruzelius

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Copyright © 1996 Lars Bruzelius.