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March 14, 1903

Biographic Clinics. The Origin of the Ill Health of De Quincey, Carlyle, Darwin, Huxley and Browning.

Author Affiliations

By George M. Gould, M.D., Editor of American Medicine. Cloth. Pp. 223. Price, $1.00. Philadelphia: P. Blakiston's Son & Co. 1903.

JAMA. 1903;XL(11):725-726. doi:10.1001/jama.1903.02490110041017

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Whatever the accomplished editor of American Medicine may write is sure to be interesting. His writings have a positive, aggressive note about them that is refreshing and invigorating. These characteristics and his versatility are well shown in this latest work, a study from the borderland between pure literature and medicine.

Dr. Gould takes five great Englishmen, De Quincey, Carlyle, Darwin, Huxley and Browning, each of whom it will be remembered was a great physical sufferer, and makes a critical study of the afflictions. All this suffering Gould believes was due to eye-strain. This is the object of the book, to prove that unrecognized and untreated refractive errors with consequent eye-strain drove De Quincey to opium, made Jane Welsh's husband an inconsiderate, ill-tempered dyspeptic tyrant, deprived Darwin of the power of long continuance at study of books or with the microscope, and caused Huxley and Browning to groan with the tortures

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