Moore, John

, a medical and miscellaneous writer, was the son of the rev. Charles Moore, a minister of the English church at Stirling, in Scotland, where this, his only surviving son, was born in 1730. His lather dying in 1735, his mother, who was a native of Glasgow, and had some property there, removed to that city, and carefully superintended the early years of her son while at school and college. Being destined for the profession of medicine, he was placed under Mr. Gordon, a practitioner of pharmacy and surgery, and at the same time attended such medical lectures as the college of Glasgow at that time afforded, which were principally the anatomical lectures of Dr. Hamilton, and those on the practice of physic by Dr. Cullen, afterwards the great ornament of the medical school of Edinburgh. Mr. Moore’s application to his studies must have been more than ordinarily successful, as we find that in 1747, when only in his seventeenth year, he went to the continent, under the protection of the duke of Argyle, and was employed as a mate in one of the military hospitals at Maestricht, in Brabant, and afterwards at Flushing. Hence he was promoted to be assistant to the surgeon of the Coldstream regiment of foot guards, | comman-ded by general Braddock, and after remaining during the winter of 1748 with this regiment at Breda, came to England at the conclusion of the peace. At London he resumed his medical studies under Dr. Hunter, and soon after set out for Paris, where he obtained the patronage of the earl of Albemarle, whom he had known in Flanders, and who was now English ambassador at the court of France, and immediately appointed Mr. Moore surgeon to his household. In this situation, although he had an opportunity of being with the ambassador, he preferred to lodge nearer the hospitals, and other sources of instruction, xvith which a more distant part of the capital abounded, and visited lord Albemarle’s family only when his assistance was required. After residing two years in Paris, it was proposed by Mr. Gordon, who was not insensible to the assiduity and improvements of his former pupil, that he should return to Glasgow, and enter into partnership with him. Mr. Moore, by the advice of his friends, accepted the invitation, but deemed it proper to take London in his way, and while there, went through a course under Dr. Smellie, then a celebrated accoucheur. On his return to Glasgow, he practised there during the space of two years, but when a diploma was granted by the university of that city to his partner, now Dr. Gordon, who chose to prescribe as a physician alone, Mr. Moore still continued to act as a surgeon; and, as a partner appeared to be necessary, he chose Mr. Hamilton, professor of anatomy, as his associate. Mr. Moore remained for a considerable period at Glasgow; but when he had attained his fortieth year, an incident occurred that gave a new turn to his ideas, and opeqed new pursuits and situations to a mind naturally active and inquisitive. James George, duke of Hamilton, a young nobleman of great promise, being affected with a consumptive disorder, in 1769, he was attended by Mr. Moore, who has always spoken of this youth in terms of the highest admiration; but, as his malady baffled all the efforts of medicine, he yielded to its pressure, after a lingering illness, in the fifteenth year of his age. This event, which Mr. Moore recorded, together with the extraordinary endowments of his patient, on his tomb in the buryingplace at Hamilton, led to a more intimate connection with this noble family. The late duke of Hamilton, being, like his brother, of a sickly constitution, his mother, the duchess f Argyle, determined that he should travel in company | with some gentleman, who to a knowledge of medicine added an acquaintance with the continent. Both these qualities were united in the person of Dr. Moore, who by this time had obtained the degree of M. D. from the university of Glasgow. They accordingly set out together, and spent a period of no less than five years abroad, during which they visited France, Italy, Switzerland, and Germany. On their return, in 1778, Dr. Moore brought his family from Glasgow to London; and in the course of the next year appeared the fruits of his travels, in “A View of Society and Manners in France‘, Switzerland, and Germany,” in 2 vols. 8vo. Two years after, in 1781, he published a continuation of the same work, in two additional volumes, entitled “A View of Society and Manners in Italy.” Having spent s6 large a portion of his time either in Scotland or on the continent, he could not expect suddenly to attain an extensive practice in the capital; nor indeed was he much consulted, unless by his particular friends. With a view, however, to practice, he published in 1785, his “Medical Sketches,” a work which was favourably received, but made no great alteration in his engagements; and the next work he published was “Zeluco,” a novel, which abounds with many interesting events, arising from uncontrouled passion on the part of a darling son, and unconditional compliance on that of a fond mother. While enjoying the success of this novel, which was very considerable, the French revolution began to occupy the minds and writings of the literary world. Dr. Moore happened to reside in France in 1792, and witnessed many of the important scenes of that eventful year, but the massacres of September tending to render a residence in Paris highly disagreeable, he returned to England; and soon after his arrival, began to arrange his materials, and in 1795, published “A View of the Causes and Progress of the French Revolution,” in 2 vols. 8vo, dedicated to the Duke of Devonshire. He begins with the reign of Henry IV. and ends with the execution of the royal family. In 1796 appeared another novel, “Edward: various Views of Human Nature, taken from Life and Manners chiefly in England.” In 1800, Dr. Moore published his “Mordaunt,” being “Sketches of Life, Characters, and Manners in various Countries including the Memoirs of a French Lady of Quality,” in 2 vols. 8vo. This chiefly consists of a series of letters, written by “the honourable John | Mordaunt,” while confined to his couch at Vevay, in Switzerland, giving an account of what he had seen in Italy, Germany, France, Portugal, &c. The work itself comes under no precise head, being neither a romance, nor a novel, nor travels: the most proper title would perhaps be that of “Recollections.” Dr. Moore was one of the first to notice the talents of his countryman the unfortunate Robert Burns, who, at his request, drew up an account of his life, and submitted it to his inspection.

After his return from his third and last journey to France, he resided the remainder of his days in his house in Clifford-street, where he died Feb. 20, 1802, leaving a daughter and five sons. Dr. Moore was a man of considederable general knowledge, but excelled in no particular branch of science. After he had once begun his travels as tutor, he assumed the character of a man of wit and humour, both which entered largely into the composition of his subsequent publications. His travels were at one time very popular, on account of the frequent recurrence of scenes of dry humour, but his constant attempts in this way made them be read, more for sprightliness of narrative than accuracy of information, or depth of remark. Of his novels, “Zeluco” only has stood its ground. 1


Gent. Mag &c.