Written as a letter to his colleague Dr. Samuel Kimberley, William Cole’s “Essay” (1689) addresses what Cole percieved as a recent increase in the occurrence of stroke by detailing the “seat, nature, and immediate causes” of apoplexy.
Cole, who received his degree from Oxford, gained significant repute in his day through his medical writings. His works were frequently reprinted on the Continent and, as in the case of this facsimile and his final work on epilepsy, were often written as letters in response to colleagues seeking medical advice. His writings brought recognition from even the most eminent members of the medical community. Most notable, Dr. Thomas Sydenham wrote his “Epistolary Dissertation” as a response to a letter from Cole, who had requested that the respected physician share his latest observations on hysteria.