Alexander Monro secundus (1733-1817)

31] Alexander Monro secundus (1733-1817) was the second of three generations of the Monro family who occupied the Chair of Anatomy in Edinburgh University for 126 years. He was appointed joint professor with his father in 1754 at the age of 21.  The professor of anatomy in those days also taught surgery although Monro secundus was not a surgeon and never operated.  He was in much demand as a respected physician and became President of the Royal College of Physicians in 1779.  As an anatomist he was a popular teacher and described a foramen (an aperture) linking the ventricles of the brain which is still known by his name. Monro was a welcome member of some of the many societies which flourished in Edinburgh at that time.  It was said of him “Of his talents as an agreeable companion, over a social glass, we had incontestable proof at our convivial meetings.  Without transgressing the bounds of the most strict sobriety, he afforded us demonstrative evidence of the exhilarating power of wine.”[i]  He was a keen gardener and grew melons and grapes in his country estate of Craiglockhart on the outskirts of Edinburgh.

[i] Chalmers, J Andrew Duncan Sr. p126