Family Group Sheet
Family Group Sheet
NameSylvanus BEVAN FRS
Birth1691
Death1765
FatherSylvanus BEVAN (1661-1727)
MotherJane PHILLIPS (1665-1727)
Other spousesElizabeth QUARE
Marriage1717
SpouseMartha HEATHCOTE
Notes for Sylvanus BEVAN FRS
Left Swansea as a young man and moved to Cheapside. He served a seven year apothecary apprenticeship with a master by the name of Thomas Mayleigh. Gaining admittance to the Freedom of the Society of Apothecaries on 5th July 1715, Silvanus established his Pharmacy in No 2 Plough Court, Lombard Street, which he rented from Salem Osgood, a Quaker merchant. A previous tenant had been Alexander Pope, a Linen draper, whose son, the famous poet, was born in the old house in 1688. William Cookworthy was taken on as an apprentice by him.

On 10th November 1715 he married Elizabeth Quare at the Quaker Meeting House in White Hart Court, Gracechurch Street. She was the daughter of Daniel Quare, clockmaker to George I.
His wedding was attended by Sarah, Duchess of Marlborough, Lord Finch, Lady Cartwright, William Penn, the Venetian ambassador and his wife. After the ceremony a dinner was eaten at Skinner's Hall. Sadly Elizabeth died a year later, giving birth to their child, a boy who died hours later. Silvanus remained alone at Plough Court for two years before marrying Martha Heathcote in 1719. They were childless.

The pharmacy prospered and in 1725 Silvanus took over the lease on 3 Plough Court and expanded his business, the same year that Silvanus was elected to the Fellowship of the Royal Society. His younger brother Timothy joined him at Plough Court about this time and in 1731 was himself admitted as a member of the Society of Apothecaries.

In May 1743 he sent a letter to the Royal Society which was printed in Philiosophical Transactions of that year. Entitled An Account of an Extraordinary Case of the Bones of a Woman Growing Soft and Flexible, communicated to the Royal Society by Mr Silvanus Bevan, it describes how he had the curiosity to make a post-mortem examination, and gave a summary of his findings (Chapman-Huston 1954, 19).

In 1745 he was communicating with James Logan, deputy in Pennsylvania to William Penn.
He spoke Welsh and was skillful at carving ivory and several busts of well-known men are still in existence (he sent one to Lord Cobham, when he was seeking likenesses for statues for his garden at Stowe.

Towards the end of his life, Silvanus left Plough Court and practised as a physican from his home in Hackney. His circle of acquaintances was wide and included William Penn, the Quaker founder of Pennsylvania of whom Silvanus carved a likeness. Silvanus died on June 5th 1765 at Hackney and is buried at Bunhill Fields.

His will was held at Somerset House (Folio "Rushworth" 207) and lists the large sums of money left to his family. The will (signed 30 Dec. 1764) was proved June 14th 1765, and witnessed by Sarah Chambers, Christopher Rawlins and Laurence Cole.
Last Modified 30 Jun 2012Created 28 Jan 2018 using Reunion for Macintosh