The leader of the Edinburgh Seven who ensured the university education of women


What we now know is that she secretly wrote for The Scottish to advance his cause in a number of press articles, written at the height of his fight.

Jex-Blake first turned to the newspaper to place an ad in 1869 after being refused a place to study medicine at the University of Edinburgh, who claimed she could not justify taking provisions “in the interests of one lady”.

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In the paper, she urged more women to come forward and sign up. The long-running Edinburgh Seven campaign was born and a long – and seemingly deep – association with the paper began.

Sophia Jex-Blake, leader of the Edinburgh Seven and undercover reporter for The Scotsman.

Edinburgh Seven campaigners faced intimidation and abuse while attending university, their attempts to pass an anatomy exam leading to a riot after an angry mob gathered at the Surgeon’s Hall in 1870 .

The incident attracted wide publicity and gained greater public support for the campaign, which gained the support of several high-profile figures, including Charles Darwin.

Editor Alexander Russel, who married one of the Edinburgh Seven, also openly supported the women. Following research by Sarah J. Ghasedi, an English professor at the University of Washington, the newspaper is now known to have printed several leaders written anonymously by Jex-Blake, who used the cover of the newspaper to shield the message from bias. prevalent against women.

In 1889, largely as a result of Jex-Blake’s struggles, an Act of Parliament sanctioned degrees for women and she became one of the first female doctors in the UK.

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