England’s Third University

by Instant Noodle



The first examination for the degree of bachelor of medicine has taken place at the London University, and has raised itself to the level of Oxford and Cambridge.

Many institutions lay claim to being the third oldest university in England, but the University of London has a good claim in this respect.

Without doubt, it will soon acquire all the other attributes of the colleges. Town and gown rows will cause perpetual confusion to the steady-going inhabitants of Euston-square: steeple-chases will be run, for the express delight of the members, on the waste grounds in the vicinity of the tall chimneys on the Birmingham railroad; and in all probability, the whole of Gower-street, from Bedford-square to the New-road, will, at a period not far distant, be turfed and formed into a T.Y.C.; the property securing its title-deeds under the arms of the university for the benefit of its legs–the bar opposite the hospital presenting a fine leap to finish the contest over, with the uncommon advantage of immediate medical assistance at hand.

The public press of the last week has duly blazoned forth the names of the successful candidates, and great must have been the rejoicings of their friends in the country at the event. But we have to quarrel with these journals for not more explicitly defining the questions proposed for the examinations–the answers to which were to be considered the tests of proficiency. By means of the ubiquity which Punch is allowed to possess, we were stationed in the examination room, at the same time that our double was delighting a crowded and highly respectable audience upon Tower-hill; and we have the unbounded gratification of offering an exact copy of the questions to our readers, that they may see with delight how high a position medical knowledge has attained in our country:–

Oh boy. This should be fun!



1. State the principal variations found in the kidneys procured at Evans’s and the Coal Hole; and likewise name the proportion of animal fibre in the rump-steaks of the above resorts. Mention, likewise, the change produced in the _albumen_, or white of an egg, by poaching it upon toast.

2. Describe the comparative circulation of blood in the body, and of the _Lancet, Medical Gazette_, and _Bell’s Life in London_, in the hospitals; and mention if Sir Charles Bell, the author of the “Bridgewater Treatise on the Hand,” is the editor of the last-named paper.


1. You are called to a fellow-student taken suddenly ill. You find him lying on his back in the fender; his eyes open, his pulse full, and his breathing stertorous. His mind appears hysterically wandering, prompting various windmill-like motions of his arms, and an accompanying lyrical intimation that he, and certain imaginary friends, have no intention of going home until the appearance of day-break. State the probable disease; and also what pathological change would be likely to be effected by putting his head under the cock of the cistern.

2. Was the Mount Hecla at the Surrey Zoological Gardens classed by Bateman in his work upon skin diseases–if so, what kind of eruption did it come under? Where was the greatest irritation produced–in the scaffold-work of the erection, or the bosom of the gentleman who lived next to the gardens, and had a private exhibition of rockets every night, as they fell through his skylight, and burst upon the stairs?

3. Which is the most powerful narcotic–opium, henbane, or a lecture upon practice of physic; and will a moderate dose of antimonial wine sweat a man as much as an examination at Apothecaries’ Hall?


1. Does any chemical combination take place between the porter and ale in a pot of half-and-half upon mixture? Is there a galvanic current set up between the pewter and the beer capable of destroying the equilibrium of living bodies.

2. Explain the philosophical meaning of the sentence–“He cut away from the crushers as quick as a flash of lightning through a gooseberry-bush.”

3. There are two kinds of electricity, positive and negative; and these have a pugnacious tendency. _A_, a student, goes up to the College _positive_ he shall pass; _B_, an examiner, thinks his abilities _negative_, and flummuxes him accordingly. _A_ afterwards meets _B_ alone, in a retired spot, where there is no policeman, and, to use his own expression, “takes out the change” upon _B_. In this case, which receives the greatest shock–_A_’s “grinder,” at hearing his pupil was plucked, or _B_ for doing it?

4. The more crowded an assembly is, the greater quantity of carbonic acid is evolved by its component members. State, upon actual experience, the _per centage_ of this gas in the atmosphere of the following places:–The Concerts d’Ete, the Swan in Hungerford Market, the pit of the Adelphi, Hunt’s Billiard Rooms, and the Colosseum during the period of its balls.


1. Mention the most liberal pawnbrokers in the neighbourhood of Guy’s and Bartholomew’s; and state under what head of diseases you class the spring outbreak of dissecting cases and tooth-drawing instruments in their windows.

2. Mention the cheapest tailors in the metropolis, and especially name those who charge you three pounds for dress coats (“best Saxony, any other colour than blue or black”), and write down five in the bills to send to your governor. Describe the anatomical difference between a peacoat, a spencer, and a Taglioni, and also state who gave the best “prish” for old ones.

(1841 almanack)