Pozzi, Samuel Jean de

BORN 3 Oct 1846, Bergerac, Dordogne - DIED 13 Jun 1918, Paris
CAUSE OF DEATH murdered by gunshots
GRAVE LOCATION Bergerac, Dordogne: Cimetière Protestant du Pont Saint-Jean, Route de la Force

Samuel-Jean Pozzy was born in Bergerac into a family of Italian and Swiss descent. His father was a minister of the Reformed Church of France. His mother died when he was ten years old and his father subsequently married Mary Anne Kempe, an Englishwoman.

He studied in Pau and Bordeaux and was nicknamed The Siren by his fellow pupils because of his appearance and manners. In 1864 he started studying medicine in Paris. In the war of 1870 he volunteered and worked as a medic. He was assistent to Paul Broca and in 1873 he was promoted.

In 1875 he started teaching at the university and in 1876 he met Joseph Lister in Scotland. In 1877 he became a surgeon. He studied gynecological methods in other countries and shared his knowledge in France. In 1881 he was painted by John Singer Sargent.

In 1889 he married Therese Loth-Cazalis, a railroad heiress. They had three children. Pozzi had affairs with opera singer Georgette Leblanc, the actresses Rejane and Sarah Bernhardt and with the widow of Bizet. in 1890, Emma Sedelmeyer Fischof, the daughter of an art dealer, became his lover and although his wife refused him a divorce he lived with Emma for the rest of his life.

He became president of the Society of Anthropology in 1888. In 1889 he performed the first gastroenterostomy in France. Together with George Clemenceau he organised the first transplant symposium in Paris. During the first World Was he worked as a military surgeon.

In 1918 in Paris he refused to operate his patient Maurice Machu for a second time. Machu shot him four times in the stomach and he died soon afterwards. He was buried in his native Bergerac. The poet Catherine de Pozzi is his daughter.

• Daughter: Pozzi, Catherine

Related persons
• was the lover of Bernhardt, Sarah
• was physician to Proust, Marcel
• was the lover of Réjane
• was painted by Sargent, John Singer


The grave of Samuel de Pozzi at the Cimetière Protestant du Pont Saint-Jean, Bergerac.
Picture by Androom (10 May 2017)


Samuel Jean Pozzi - Wikipedia

Prack, Rudolf

Published: 28 May 2017
Last update: 25 Apr 2022