Mark Akenside (1721-1770), was an English poet and physician. He was sent in 1739 to Edinburgh to study theology with a view to becoming a minister. After one winter as a theology student, he changed to medicine. In 1740 he became a deist, was elected a member of the Medical Society of Edinburgh and printed his Ode on the Winter Solstice in a small volume of poems. During a visit to Morpeth he had the idea for his didactic poem, The Pleasures of the Imagination (1744) which was well received, and was translated into many languages. In 1745 appeared his Odes on Several Subjects and in 1746 he wrote his much-praised Hymn to the Naiads. He then began to devote himself almost exclusively to his profession, and was an acute and learned physician. He was admitted M. D. at the University of Cambridge in 1753, fellow of the Royal College of Physicians in 1754, and fourth censor in 1755. At the accession of George III he converted to Tory principles and was rewarded by the appointment of physician to the queen.