Nicholas Culpeper (1616–1654) was an English physician, herbalist and astrologer. He wrote three books including The English Physician, Complete Herbal and Astrological Judgement of Diseases from the Decumbiture of the Sick. He believed in natural medicine and was critical of the artificial and expensive treatments prescribed by contemporary physicians. He believed that his colleagues were too ready to follow tradition and too often unwilling to reason or experiment. He married into a wealthy family and simply collected his herbal remedies from the fields around Spitalfields in east London – this enabled him to provide services to patients for free. He felt that many of his fellow physicians were motivated by greed and he was forthright in saying so. His opinions made him unpopular amongst the medical hierarchy but he remained outspoken until his early death from tuberculosis: ‘For God’s sake build not your faith upon Tradition, ‘tis as rotten as a rotten Post’ ( 2 ). Culpeper was equally critical of lawyers and priests.