HC Deb 04 April 1867 vol 186 c1108

said, he wished to ask the Vice President of the Committee of Council on Education, Whether, on the 25th of January last, the Lords of the Privy Council issued an Order permitting Dr. Edward Seaton to go on board the vessels called the La Plata, Æolus, and Menelaus, under quarantine at the Mother-bank, off the Isle of Wight, "without being in any way subject to the restraint of quarantine;" and, if so, on what principle Dr. Seaton was privileged to forego the requirements supposed to be necessary for the security of the public health?


, in reply, said, the occurrence alluded to by the hon. Baronet took place during the very cold weather in January last. Quarantine was not founded on the theory that it was necessary to stop the spread of yellow fever in cold weather, but rather to prevent injury to commerce. If a vessel arrived at Southampton from the West Indies with yellow fever on board, that port would be declared infected, and every vessel proceeding thence to foreign countries would be detained in quarantine. That would be injurious to commerce. Quarantine in this country was not a medical, but a commercial regulation. Dr. Seaton did go on board the vessels named; but it was recognised by all foreign countries that medical officers had a right to board vessels in quarantine.