Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Butter, John

BUTTER, JOHN, M.D. (1791–1877), ophthalmic surgeon, was born at Woodbury, near Exeter, on 22 Jan. 1791. He was educated at Exeter grammar school, and studied for his profession at Devon and Exeter Hospital. He obtained the M.D. degree at Edinburgh in 1820, and was chosen a member of the Royal Society in 1822. He was appointed surgeon of the South Devon Militia, and ultimately settled at Plymouth, where he specially devoted himself to diseases of the eye. Along with Dr. Edward Moore, he was the originator of the Plymouth Eye Dispensary. He was the author of ‘Ophthalmic Diseases,’ 1821, ‘Dockyard Diseases, or Irritative Fever,’ 1825, and of various medical and chirurgical memoirs. In recognition of his services to the dispensary he was, in 1854, presented with his portrait, which hangs in the board room. He lost one eye through ophthalmic rheumatism, contracted by exposure while examining recruits for the Crimea, and in 1856 became totally blind.

[Plymouth Western Daily Mercury, 15 Jan. 1877.]