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Joshua Lasher (1647–1729)


Joshua (or “Jehoseua”) Lasher was born on 17 February 1647. His father was James Lasher, described in Alumni Oxonienses as “of London, pleb”.

Lasher was admitted to Merchant Taylors’ School at the age of 14 in 1662, and was matriculated at the University of Oxford from St John’s College on 14 July 1665 when he was 17. He obtained his BA in 1668, and became a Fellow of his college, obtaining his MA on 22 March 1672/3, his B.Med. in 1676, and his D.Med. in 1679.

Joshua Lasher married Martha, a barber’s daughter, and practised as a physician in Pennyfarthing (now Pembroke) Street in St Aldate’s parish. Anthony Wood (III:303) remarks that on 26 May 1689,”Timothy Hall bishop of Oxon was then, as ’tis said, in Oxon, lodged at Dr Joshua Lasher’s house in Pennyfarthing Street.”

In 1696 Dr Lasher paid tax on twenty windows in St Aldate's parish.

Thomas Hearne (ii.49) described him thus:

Lasher (Joshua) Fellow of St John’s Coll. and Dr of Physick. He married a Barber’s Daughter and so liv’d in ye Town as a Practitioner of Physick. He was noted for a silly, Puritannical, prick-ear’d Whigg, and as fit to be made a Cuckold of as any of his neighbouring Towns-men. He has printed a Pharmacopoeia, which he dedicated to Dr Hough Bp. of Oxon [1690–1699] who presented him with Cooper’s Anatomy, which ye Dr shews to his Visitants at ye same time with his wife.

In 1706 Lasher's book Pharmacopoeus et chymicus, symmystæ; seu pharmacopœia chymica was published.

Lasher was Regius Professor of Medicine at Oxford from 1718 until his death in 1729.

Joshua Lasher died in Oxford in 1729 and was buried within the altar rails of St Aldate’s Church on 4 April.

The “Will of Joshua Lasher, Doctor and Regius Professor of Physic of Oxford” (date of probate 17 May 1729) was deposited at the Prerogative Court of Canterbury: ref PROB 11/629. He does not appear to have had any surviving children: he left his house to his wife Martha, and it was then to pass to his cousin, the apothecary Henry Lasher,

His widow Martha Lasher was buried in that church on 29 April 1743.


See also:

  • Rawl., iii.256
  • Lasher, Joshua: Pharmacopoeus et chymicus, symmystæ, seu Pharmacopœia chymica (London, 1698, reprinted 1706)

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