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Royal College of Surgeons

The Royal College of Surgeons of England is an independent professional body committed to promoting and advancing the highest standards of surgical care for patients. It is situated at Lincoln's Inn Fields in London.


The origins of the College lie in the union of the surgeons and barbers by Henry VIII of England in 1540 to form the Company of Barber-Surgeons. In 1745 the surgeons broke away to form the Company of Surgeons. In 1797 they moved to Lincoln's Inn Fields, and in 1800 the Company was granted a Royal Charter.

In 1799 the government purchased the collection of John Hunter which they presented to the College. This formed the basis of the Hunterian Collection, which has since been supplemented by others such as Richard Owen.