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April 18, 1966

SIR JAMES PAGET (1814-1899)

JAMA. 1966;196(3):284-285. doi:10.1001/jama.1966.03100160134044

James Paget, surgeon to St. Bartholomew's Hospital, and one of the first English surgeons to investigate microscopic as well as macroscopic structure, was born in 1814 at Yarmouth, the eighth in a family with 16 siblings. His father— brewer, large shipowner, and purveyor to his majesty's ships—experienced good fortune and bad. His mother, endowed with industry and charm, was gracious in prosperity and unwavering in adversity. She collected all types of curiosities and was clever at knitting and painting. James attended a nearby school kept by a Unitarian minister. It was a fair education for what it cost—eight guineas a year. He acquired sufficient comprehension of Latin and Greek for a "commonplace understanding of a Latin or a Greek book."1 James was not the only distinguished physician in the Paget family. An older brother George obtained a medical fellowship at Gonville and Caius College and later was regius professor of

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