December 1962

The Principles and Practice of Medicine

Author Affiliations

Fifth Edition. By Sir Stanley Davidson and Edinburgh Staff. Price, $8. Pp. 1,139. Williams & Wilkins Company, 428 E. Preston St., Baltimore 2, 1960.

Arch Intern Med. 1962;110(6):912-913. doi:10.1001/archinte.1962.03620240094016

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This is a most excellent textbook of medicine, probably the best there is. It is obvious that the authors write from experience rather than theory, and they have seen what they write about. Though remarkably complete and up to date, it remains a reasonable size. The traditional stuffing which overloads most books is noticeably absent; when there are only 2 or 3 things to say about an illness, those are all that is said; if a well-known treatment is useless—they say so. Everything is put in the shortest and clearest way, and only someone who has written a certain amount himself knows the enormous work this implies. Good writing and good editing clear up its own mess leaving no trace of the struggle. The only evidence is a script which requires no mental distillation of the kind—"Ah, I see! It really comes down to this." It has already come down.

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